It's pretty simple: Buy your kid a bike, fer crying out loud.
If your kid has a bike, then you're already done.
If you don't have a kid, buy a bike for somebody else's kid.
For your significant other who's into bikes if you don't do bikes...
If you don't know bikes but you're hunting for gifts for the bicyclist in your family, consider these gifts:
A gift membership in your local or regional or national cycling advocacy organization. In the United States, that would be the League of American Bicyclists. Google for "[your city] bicycle advocacy" for the advocacy group in your area for local options.
We already know this, I think, but now research shows that "experiential" gifts are more satisfying than material gifts. We loose interest in material things, which is why keeping up with the Jones (buying a bigger house, getting nicer car or even *gasp* a better bike) is such a loosing proposition. So a good gift would be an experience: time and activities with your loved ones. Go on an extended bike tour, or even just a short, casual bike ride. Go on a simple vacation that concentrates on time with the family.
Finally, and most important IMHO: Peace and goodwill to all.
Have a Merry Christmas and Happy Holiday season, all.
IMPORTANT: Please post comments for this article at the new CYCLELICIOUS 2.0 version of this page.
Good tips Fritz, To "buy a bike for somebody else's kid", I want to mention another option. You can fix up discarded bikes to give to kids who don't have them. I see old kid's bikes in the trash fairly often that only need minor repairs to be usable again. It is certainly a good feeling to be able to give a kid a bike who otherwise would not have one.