The annual gift tax exclusion is currently $13,000.00 per person (2009). This means that without using any of your lifetime exemption (currently $1,000,000.00 million dollars 2009) yo can give any child, grandchild or other person $13,000.00. If you are married, you can each make a gift of that amount. And, if one spouse has all of the assets involved in the gift, the other spouse can join in the gift and the couple can make a "split gift" of $26,000.00. However, this requires that the gift be reported on form 709.
Here is a chart of the amount of the annual gift tax exclusion for the past few years.