Buying Christmas presents for a picky teen may be difficult, but here are some brilliant ideas

Finding appropriate gifts to fill a teenager's Christmas stocking can be a nightmare.

Parents, friends, and family of notoriously hard-to-please teens face the daunting task of Christmas shopping with understandable trepidation.

To please, or not to please, that is the question. And sometimes it seems as if pleasing a teenager is a "Mission Impossible," but Today.com has published some useful tips and hints on how to shop for a picky teen this Christmas.

WHAT ARE YOUR TEEN'S INTERESTS?

Successful gift-givers put themselves in the recipient's shoes. What are the teen's particular passions? Sports? Art? Music? Research his social media pages for clues to his or her interests, hobbies, or favorite artists for appropriate gift ideas.

With that information in hand, it may be possible to acquire a collectible such as an autographed CD, book, T-shirt, or memorabilia from his or her cult movie.

If all else fails, head for the bookstore to the Young Adult section and browse for the latest age-appropriate best-seller.

TWEENS ARE EQUALLY PICKY

The child on your list may be only 9 or 10, but these "tweens" can sometimes be even harder to please than fully-fledged teenagers. Appropriate items on their gift shopping list might be CD's, DVD's, MP3 players, movie tickets, video games, trading cards, or computers. Again, knowledge of their likes and dislikes is essential.

TRADITIONAL GIFTS MAY TURN THE TRICK

Of course, there is no need to invent a better mouse-trap, and you can always rely on tried and tested traditional gifts. You can't go wrong with science, magic, and electrical circuits kits; traditional games like Chess, Rummikub, Solitaire, or Dominos. If all else fails, head for the bookstore to the Young Adult section and browse for the latest age-appropriate best-seller.

BUYING CLOTHING CAN BE RISKY

Buying clothing for image-conscious teens or tweens is not a good idea. Apart from the sizing issue, most will not wear clothes they haven't picked out for themselves. A safe bet is to give a Gift Voucher for a shop you know they like.

WHEN ALL ELSE FAILS BET ON A VOUCHER

If you run out of patience and ideas for a gift for a tween or a teen, a voucher is always a safe bet. If the child is into music, sports or fashion, buy the appropriate voucher for a popular store and let them do the hard work for you.

In an absolute emergency, slip some money into an envelope as a contribution to the teen's holiday kitty, but seek approval of the parents first.

Follow these hints and hopefully, Christmas shopping for your teen or tween will be a joyous experience for all involved.

Read more on Twitter Amomama USA.

THE ROYAL WHO CAN'T WAIT FOR CHRISTMAS

Nothing is as exciting - or as tempting - as a big pile of glittering presents under a Christmas tree. Who can resist taking a peek, or maybe even opening a present or two before the big day?

Royal children are no exception and it seems that 5-year-old Prince George has inherited a habit from his grandmother Princess Diana.

Princess Diana had confessed that she couldn't resist always opening her presents before Christmas Day, and George is a chip off the old block.

Prince George can't really be blamed since his father Prince William is a dreadful example for the impressionable child, since he too, opens his presents before Christmas.

Will Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis fall prey to this dreadful family curse? Will they also be incapable of resisting the tempting presents under the Royal tree? Only time will tell.

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