Have a friend who thinks about fishing most of the time?
Hit the sports shop and buy a great lure, Mendelsohn says. "You only buy one, but it's the one he doesn't have."
Or, if you know the person is getting a bicycle for Christmas, you can buy a bell, she says. "The bell is the joy of riding the bike."
Or tap into their happy childhood memories.
"Get them their favorite childhood book," Mendelsohn says, adding that this has been one of her go-to gifts ever since she received it as an expectant mom. "It's one of the best presents I ever got."