And that said, if you do decide to give this gift that keeps on giving, try to give them some space to go along with it. Even if it is just a temporary space.... "you can do whatever you want on the table in the garage for three days, but then I'm going to need you to clean it up"... I think most people need to be able to stretch out, think, consider, and yes, make a mess... without worrying that Mom is going to barge in and make them clean it all up before they're done. And yes, walking away from it all for a whole day or more might actually be an important part of the process.... a long pause before inspiration strikes. A pause we don't often give enough respect.
This is just some stuff that I grabbed at the dollar store, Hobby Lobby, Harbor Freight, and Home Depot. It's not at all hard and fast, though I do think lots and lots of tape and string and cord are indispensable (and are an awesome present all on their own.... consider giving a roll of duct tape and package of cord at the next kid birthday party you're invited to and watch their face light up....). Since it might be a bit hard to see, I'll write it all out for you:
Glue gun and glue sticks (if you're worried your kid will burn themselves, I LOVE this post by Teacher Tom with some thoughts on the matter)
Scissors (good ones)
Safety goggles (more for feeling cool and important than any dangers posed to the eyes with these tools and materials... save them for when you bust out the hammers, saws, and drills, though)
Gorilla Glue (it's non-toxic, and dries super strong) (and kids love gorillas)
Duct tape, painter's tape, scotch tape
Popsicle sticks (obviously optional, but are a great little building unit that I have seen used in a multitude of creative ways)
Drinking straws (same thing)
A variety of pulleys (endless fun)
Letter and number stickers
Twine, string, jute, and rope.... lots of it
I got kind of a lightweight plastic toolbox/storage box with handle to hold all this good stuff because I'm planning on sending it to my nephews (my own children have easy access to all this and more, the lucky so-and-so's) but you could pick up a pretty cool toolbox that would lend even more dignity and glory to this already glorious gift.
And of course on the side they're gonna need some goods to work with.... pieces of wood, bits and bobs from the recycling, old cds, rocks.... I don't know, just whatever you have lying around, look at it with fresh eyes and..... give it to your kid for christmas! Now I don't know your kid, but I have a feeling they would love it.....