A Lifestyle Fact To Ponder:

Estimates of revenue from video games for the year 2000 were $7.98 billion. Estimates of revenue for the year 2010 were $19.66 billion. (Figures were provided by The NPD Group.)

Number 17 and Nayeli E Rodriguez, “Exactly How Much Are The Times A-Changin’?,” Newsweek, July 26, 2010, p. 56.

A Lifestyle Thought For Action:

In 2000, people spent $7.98 billion on video games. By 2010, people spent $19.66 billion on video games. Somehow, people “found” an additional $11.68 billion a year in 2010. That amount could have stopped child deaths and evangelized the world. Why aren’t we getting organized about Jesus’ priorities? For an idea to mobilize the church to more missions, see empty tomb’s Mission Match® .

A Call To Action:

“A final word: Be strong with the Lord’s mighty power. Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies and tricks of the Devil. For we are not fighting against people made of flesh and blood, but against the evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against those mighty powers of darkness who rule this world, and against wicked spirits in the heavenly realms. Use every piece of God’s armor to resist the enemy in the time of evil, so that after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the sturdy belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News, so that you will be fully prepared. In every battle you will need faith as your shield to stop the fiery arrows aimed at you by Satan. Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Pray at all times and on every occasion in the power of the Holy Spirit. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all Christians everywhere.”

Ephesians 6:10-18, NLT

Mission Expenditures

The 2005 Overseas Ministries income, including donations and other sources, to 700 Protestant mission agencies, including denominational, interdenominational and independent agencies, was $5.2 billion.99

If church members in the U.S. had tithed (given 10%) in 2007 (latest year available), there would have been an additional $161 billion available for the mission of the church. Rather than reach their potential, church member spending is similar to that of Americans in general, such as the following.

The Potential

Consumer Expenditures*

“According to a new survey by the Retail Advertising and Marketing Association, conducted by BIGresearch, the average consumer is expected to spend $59.33 on game-related merchandise, apparel and snacks, up from $52.63 last year. Total Super Bowl spending is expected to reach $10.1 billion.”98

“Apple has been releasing iPad sales stats numerous times since its launch. Today, it was revealed that the iPad has hit 1 million units sold, a whooping 12 million iPad apps and 1.5 million ibooks downloaded. As noted in the press release, the iPad took just 28 days to reach the 1 million milestone, whereas the 1st gen iPhone sold as much in 74 days.”96 The cost of a 16 GB iPad is $499.00.97

“Pet owners spent $43.2 billion on their animals in 2008, according to the American Pet Products Association. This year, despite the recession, they are expected to spend 5% more.” 95

The sale of 3-D TV sets is starting this March 2010. The first models cost around $3,000. Of the 35 million TV sets sold in the U.S. from March to December 2010, Samsung expects 3 to 4 million to be 3-D TV systems. Three million TV sets sold at $3,000 each would make $9 billion.94

“This year, the [banking] industry is expected to generate $86.4 billion in [credit card] fee revenue from consumers, according to R.K. Hammer, nearly $7.5 billion more than it earned during 2009.”93

“While the average cost of attending an NFL game for a family of four is $412.64, it’s a staggering $758.58 to watch the Cowboys. (That figure includes tickets and drinks for four people, as well as a couple of caps.)”92

“Even so, about $5 billion, or about 6 percent, of what Americans spend on gift cards this year won’t be used, including what’s lost to fees, according to TowerGroup.”91

“Last year alone, Americans spend more than $1 billion on over-the-counter bleaching products…[one teeth whitening company founder] predicts the market for tooth-whitening products and services will reach $15 billion by 2010.”90

“Artisanal cheese is one of the fastest growing segments of the $59 billion gourmet food industry, with cheese and dairy expected to see double-digit growth through 2012, according to consumer research firm Packaged Facts.”89

“Medical costs associated with obesity increased from 6.5 percent of all medical spending in 1998 to about 9 percent in 2006, according to the study released here and published today in the journal Health Affairs.”88

“Wedding trend tracker The Wedding Report Inc. estimates the average cost of a wedding will dip slightly this year to $28,704, compared with $28,732 in 2007. That runs counter to the trend of the past 15 years, when wedding spending has nearly doubled, according to Conde Nast data.”86

“U.S. consumers spent $16.8 billion on bottled water in 2007, according to the trade publication Beverage Digest. That’s up 12 percent from the year before.”86

“He estimated that video and computer game sales this year will total $19 billion in the U.S., up from $13.5 billion last year.”85

In 20 years, scrapbooking has grown to a $2.6 billion industry.84

“For $30,000 a year, the Van Horssen Group offers members the right to drive the Ferrari 360 Spider (sticker price: $200,000) and nine other exotic cars for 56 days a year. For a starting price of $116,000, Marquis Jet will give its members 25 hours of flight time in a private jet.83

“Americans buy billions of dollars of the stuff (candy) each year–to the tune of $29 billion in retail sales in 2007, according to the National Confectioners Association. That’s about a 3 percent increase from the previous year.”82

“TowerGroup in Needham, Mass., estimates that of the $97 billion worth of gift cards purchased in 2007, nearly $8 billion went unused, although no one has an exact count.”81

“According to the American Pet Products Manufacturers Association, Americans spent more than $9.4 billion for vet care in 2006.”80

“Most people treasure family members, but a Swiss company is perhaps helping people go a little too far. For about $7,500, Algordanza of Chur, Switzerland, will take the ashes of a dead relative and turn them into a synthetic diamond. The company’s chairman, Veit Brimer, told the Reuters news service that, ‘astonishingly,’ many of his customers are Christians: “They say: ‘Why should I say goodbye? I’ll see my husband in 15 years in heaven anyway.'””79

The 40% of Americans who carry balances from month to month–known as “revolvers,” as in revolving credit–get socked the hardest. In 2007, credit-card issuers imposed $18.1 billion in penalty fees on revolvers–up more than 50% since 2003 and accounting for nearly half of the $40.7 billion in industry profits.78

There are 6.8 million vacation homes in the U.S. with the typical owners living 220 miles away.77

According to the U.S. EPA, Americans spend $25 billion a year on lawn care. Residential lawns and gardens are doused with 80 million pounds of chemical pesticides and 70 million tons of fertilizers annually…76

Wedding trend tracker The Wedding Report Inc. estimates the average cost of a wedding will dip slightly this year to $28,704, compared with $28,732 in 2007. That runs counter to the trend of the past 15 years, when wedding spending has nearly doubled, according to Conde Nast data.75

The total carbonated soft drink volume in 2007 was about 9.9 billion 192-oz cases. The retail dollar value of the U.S. CSD business in 2007 was up about +2.7% to $72 billion.74

A 2004 survey reports that the average American woman buys four bags every year. For those who prefer to go slumming, or to look as if they are going slumming, there is a handbag called “hobo.” Was glad to hear about Miss Perfect Hobo, Celine Bittersweet Hobo and the Prada Nappa Gaufre Convertible Hobo, at only $795, $1700, and $1,750 each. Buying these bargains will enable the purchasers to look fashionable as they give thousands to charities and up their church’s stewardship pledge for 2008.73

Half of the U.S. population celebrates Valentine’s Day by purchasing at least one greeting card, according to Hallmark…According to an MSNBC report, Americans spent as much as $13.7 billion last Valentine’s Day 2006, up 22 percent from just five years ago.72

If McDonalds can persuade its franchisees to sign on, analysts say it can likely thrive in the growing $12 billion specialty coffee market, which includes both brewed coffee and beans. About one in five Americans drink some kind of expresso-based coffee each day, and the market is supposed to grow by at least 4 percent each year until 2011.71

Although it would take $5 billion additional a year to prevent about two-thirds of the 10 million annual deaths of children under five around the globe, the church has not provided the moral leadership or organizing structure to achieve that possibility. Contrast that with the entrepreneurship of retail thieves who are estimated to have cost retailers $41.6 billion in 2006, up slightly from 2005. One might conclude that thieves are more committed to their cause than are Christians to the mandate of Jesus to love the little children of the world.70

In an effort to boost the global $14 billion fragrance industry, cosmetic groups are churning out new scents at an unprecedented rate.69

In 2006, the average home built in America was 2,459 square feet — up from less than 2,000 square feet in the 1980s. ‘The average home size has been continuously rising for the last 35 years,’ Gopal Ahuwalia, a top researcher with the National Association of Home Builders, to industry members — ‘During the same period, the family size has been declining.’68

A century ago, Americans spent 43 percent of their incomes on food and another 14 percent on clothing. By 2002, those shares were 13 percent and 4 percent. Meanwhile, family incomes (after inflation) had tripled. Filling the spending gaps are all the things we take for granted — cars, TVs, travel, telephones, the Internet. Home ownership has zipped from about 20 percent to almost 70 percent of households.67

“One in five in American houses had at least four bedrooms in 2005.  That’s up from one in six in 1990, despite shrinking families and increasing costs for construction and energy. Houses with five or more bedrooms were the fastest growing type in that time, adding to the nation’s consumption of resources and reputation for excess.”66

$27 billion, the total that back-to-school sales are expected to reach in 2007
$150 billion, total sales in the luxury market in 2006
$179 billion, the amount spent by teenagers between the ages of 12 and 19 in 2006, this translates to $102 per teen per week.65

I spend at least $3 to $4 a day, times five, which is $20 a week. I spend anywhere between $80 and $100 a month on coffee.64

“A legion of aficionados across the country – usually men near or in retirement – devote their free time to buying, maintaining and playing with pricey, elaborate toy-train systems in their basements, garages or backyards.  With full layouts that can cost tens of thousands of dollars, a prerequisite for toy-train junkies is plenty of expendable cash…Huff & Puff Industries…specializes in designing and installing elaborate track layouts.  [Their] layouts start at $25,000 ‘and go skyward from there.'”63

“Americans spend $22 billion a year on toys.  While we have less than 4% of the world’s kids we buy 40% of the toys.  And many of them are Barbies.  In fact, there are more Barbies than people in the U.S.”62

Last year, Americans spent $31.2 billion, about $97 each, on flowers, candy, greeting cards and other gifts tied to the February tradition, according to the National Retail Federation.61

“American birders spend more than $32 billion annually on their hobby and about 18 million travel to see birds, according to a 2001 study by the U.S. Fish and Wildfire Service. The average birder that year was 49 with an above-average income and education level. Tour operators offer hundreds of birding trips to all points every year to cater to them.”60

Designer Robert Schoeller believes “people don’t bat an eye at routinely spending $30,000″ on bath upgrades.59

The portable MP3 player category has shattered all expectations as unit sales more than doubled in 2004 to over 6.9 mln units and dollar sales nearly tripled in revenue to $1.2 bln, compared to figures from 2003.58

Americans have an insatiable appetite for entertainment and recreation which resulted in $705.0 billion in spending in 2004, an increase of 6.8 percent over 2003, according to a new Unity Marketing study Entertainment and Recreational Products Report, 2005, on consumer’s entertainment and recreational product purchases.57

According to the National Retail Federation, college students spent $2.6 billion in dorm room furnishings in 2004, not including $7.5 billion on consumer electronics like computers and TV’s. Students spent on average $260.09 on dorm decor, and another $509.14 on consumer electronics, according to NRF.56

Americans have apparently run out of room, even though the average house now has 2,330 square feet, up 55 percent from 1970…The insatiable race for space is fueling a $15 billion self-storage industry that dwarfs Hollywood’s annual $9 billion.55

…U.S. consumers spend an estimated $50 billion a year on footwear.54

“U.S. retail sales of video game consoles, hand-held devices, games and accessories were up 6 percent to $10.5 billion in 2005, market researchers NPD Group… The 2005 result beat a previous high of $10.3 billion in 2002.” 53

Domestic box-office receipts were $9.4 billion [in 2004]. “Though the year’s revenues were up, higher admission prices mean movie attendance was off about 1.7.percent…”52

In 2003 American consumers spent $53.6 billion buying jewelry and watches, a 5.1% increase over previous year.51

“U.S. spas reported 136 million visits last year [2004] — nearly one visit for every two residents in the nation. Men and teens are the fastest-growing segment of customers in the $11.2 billion industry.”50

America now has more boats and yachts than it has water—harbors from coast to coast have waiting lists for new moorings.49

The Web site provides the typical cost of weddings by zip code. The national average cost for a wedding is $26,800, with the reception representing $13,692 of that amount.48

The U.S. luxury market was an estimated $400 billion in 2003. [Michael] “Silverstein sees nothing but blue skies ahead for the rest of the 47 million households out there that long for luxury, with the market expanding from $400 billion to $1 trillion by 2010. . . “Different kinds of emotions, in fact, spur luxury purchases,” adds Silverstein. “We buy that new car or television, for example, when we’re ‘questing,’ seeking satisfaction through material things when our life or job is unsatisfying; we buy jewelry or fine wine when we’re ‘connecting,’ seeking romance and spending money to make ourselves look good; and we indulge in takeout food or a day at the spa to reward ourselves after a hectic workweek when we’re ‘taking care of me.’ “47

Cosmetics & toiletries is a $30-billion-a-year business in U.S.46

Though the highly competitive $64 billion soft drink industry [2003] is dominated by regular soda, sales of diet are surging and some industry analysts say low-cal eventually could take the lead.45

The salty snack business is now a $22 billion industry in the United States. Estimated annual sales of snacks in the United States in 2002: Potato chips: $5.9 billion; Tortilla chips: $4.5 billion; Pretzels: $1.3 billion; Corn snacks: $861 million.44

In 2003, the revenues for Hollywood studio sales of DVD’s was $9.4 billion. The top 5 selling DVD’s in terms of millions of units were: 1. “Finding Nemo” 21.5; 2. “LOTR: The Fellowship of the Ring” 18.9; 3. “LOTR: The Two Towers” 17.3; 4. “Pirates of the Caribbean” 16.4; 5. “Spider-Man” Special Edition 13.4.43

Spending on weddings has grown to $57 billion in 2003, up from $44 billion in 2002 and $46 billion 2001. 42

“The average household with one or more credit cards owes more than $8,000 on those cards, up from $3,000 in 1990…If you are among the roughly 60% of credit-card holders who run monthly balances, you pay (on average) 14.7% interest — 14.7% more for everything you buy.”41

“This year [2003] pet purchases are expected to rise to $31 billion, despite the raise-free economy, with much of the money going to products no one dreamed of 10 years ago.” Some of the items include $30-per-lb. beef patties, dog jewelry, outfits and bags.40

The average cost of a wedding has grown 50 percent in the past decade, from $15,208 in 1990 to $22,360 in 2002, according to the Conde Nast Bridal Infobank. The study also found that 43 percent of couples said they spent more on the wedding than they had planned.39

In July [2003], exactly 150 years ago, the potato chip was first made by a chef named George Crum in Saratoga Springs, New York. The potato chip is now a $6 billion industry.38

The tween (girls in the 8-12 age group) market accounts for a significant 20 percent of total toy sales which reached $21.3 billion last year (2002) according to NPD Group, a market information company in Port Washington, N.Y.37

In 2002 all 12- to 19-year-olds spent $172 billion, estimates Teenage Research Unlimited. That was money under their control, not what parents spent on their behalf. It amounted to an average of $92 a week for 16- to 17-year-olds.36

Last year, American teens spent $170 billion in 2002 on products for themselves or their family households, up from $155 billion in 2000, according to a survey conducted by Teenage Research Unlimited, a suburban Chicago firm that tracks youth trends.35

“In 2002, Americans spent $7.7 billion on 6.9 million cosmetic procedures, says the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. This was more than triple the number in 1997 (2.1 million), and included 1.7 million Botox injections for facial wrinkles, 495,000 chemical peels, 125,000 face-lifts and 83,000 tummy tucks.”34

Total U.S. domestic box office receipts were $9,185.9 million in 2003. There were 1,523.3 million tickets sold and the top grossing movie was: The Lord of the Ring: Return of the King.33

The use of the refined natural muscle relaxant Botox is increasing among Dermatologists and Plastic Surgeons in the U.S. “Allergen (the manufacturer of Botox) sales of Botox for all uses were $310 million last year (2001), a figure the company expects to grow by 25 to 35 percent this year (2002), and which some analysts think could reach $1 billion in a few years.”32

Teeth whitening is a growing $600 million industry.31

Two years ago, the jewelry industry totaled the figures and found that women had bought $12.1 billion worth of these baubles [diamonds] for themselves in 1999 – a 41 percent increase from the previous year.5


Liposuction, which removes fat, has become the most common plastic surgery procedure in the United States. In 2001 there were approximately 385,000 liposuction procedures done.29

Limo rides as rewards for elementary age children are becoming more common. “Limousine companies said business was way up, as more parents sent limos for children as young as kindergartners.”28

The personal chef business is growing so quickly, it’s expected to explode in the next decade-largely because working people with no time to cook just keep getting busier…the American Personal Chef Association has projected that the current ranks of 6,000 to 7,000 personal chefs will grow to about 20,000 within five years.27

Just released U.S. Market Spending Report indicates that consumer spending for online content in the United States totaled $1.3 billion in 2002, an increase of 95% over 2001. According to the study, conducted by comScore Networks for the Online Publishers Association, the Personal/Dating category surpassed both Business/Investment and Entertainment/Lifestyles to become the largest paid content category in 2002 with $302 million in revenues, up nearly threefold from $72 million in 200126

Space Adventures, which helped broker Dennis Tito’s $20 million spaceflight, has several more potential customers for tens of millions each. The company has already booked 100 reservations for a $98,000 suborbital space flight aboard an, as yet, unbuilt space jet.25

Tempest Tours is leading adventure travelers on a trip to Tornado Alley to chase storms.24

Sport anglers fishing for all species spend between $7 billion and $8 billion a year in the Great Lakes states.23

In 2001, Americans spent $38 billion on state lotteries.22

Children aged 4 to 12 spent almost $27 billion at their own discretion in 1998 and are thought to have directly influenced $187 billion in parental purchases and to have indirectly influenced another $300 billion. Teenagers spent $100 billion and influenced the spending of another $50 billion. Advertising aimed at children came to $5 billion.21

By 2000 spending on the lawn and garden industry equaled $85 billion.
Of that, $6.3 billion was spent on lawn and garden accessories like sundials,
fountains and sculptures.20

In 2001, home automation had a $600 million market. It is expected to increase to an $8 billion industry in the next four years.19

Research firm IDC reports that total domestic hardware and software sales for interactive games totaled $8.2 billion in 2000-vs. $7.75 billion in U.S. movie box-office receipts. IDC expects sales of game hardware and software to hit $11.4 billion in 200118

In 2000 American toy sales reached $23 billion.17

In 2000 Americans spent $13 billion a year on chocolate in all its forms.16

In 2000 annual U.S. vending machine sales were $36 billion.15

U.S. gumball sales were at $500 million in 2000.14

The 2001 Easter holiday sales were expected to be $2.8 billion.13

A new dentistry option is tooth art. One artist “has created dozens of one-of-a-kind crowns, adorning them with flowers, animals, and even inscriptions. Tooth art costs between $50 and $200.”12

In 1999 the sales of single family second homes came to 377,000.11

In 1999, 9 million Americans exceeded $100,000 in household income.10

Easter candy sales alone were expected to exceed $1.8 billion in 2000.9

In 1999 sales through jewelry stores were $23.9 billion.8

In 1999 fast food restaurant sales were at $110 billion.7

In 1999 expected restaurant sales were estimated to advance 4.6% to $354 billion.6

U.S. Consumers spent more than $24.3 billion on candy in 2002, a 1.6% increase over 2001, according to figures based on the U.S. Department of Commerce 2002 Confectionary Report and issued by the National Confectioners Association. On average, consumers made $84.34 worth of candy purchases last year [2002], up 0.3% versus the previous year, reported Candy Business.5

In 1998 greeting card sales were $7.1 billion. Of the total sales, 8%, or $570 million, were for religious cards.4

A new trend among affluent households is to hire household managers at $25,000 to $100,000 a year to run their large homes.3

By 1993 adventure travel became an $8 billion a year business. It comprises 20% of the $40 billion U.S. leisure-travel industry.2

The pizza industry is close to $30 billion while two-thirds of the annual 10.6 million child deaths around the globe could be prevented for about $5 billion a year.1

* According to the Princeton Research Center, 84% of the U.S. Population cites a historically Christian tradition as its religious preference. Membership in these groups would be upwards of 60% of the entire population (see George H. Gallup, Jr., Religion in America, Princeton, NJ: The Princeton Religion Research Center, 1996). Consumer spending comes from the entire U.S. population.

99A. Scott Moreau, “Putting the Survey in Perspective,” Linda J. Weber and Dotsey Welliver, eds., Mission Handbook 2007-2009(Wheaton, IL: Evangelism and Missions Informational Service, 2007), p. 12, 13.
98Kathy Grannis; “Super Bowl Equals Party Time, According to RAMA Survey”; January 25, 2011;; p. 1 of 1/25/11 10:54 AM printout.
97Apple Store published 2010;; p. 1 of May 28, 2010 3:14pm printout.
96Phillip Lam; “Tag Archive: ipad sales figures 1 Million iPads Sold in First Month”; from iPadinsider published May 3, 2010;; p. 1 of May 28, 2010 2:21pm printout.
95Stacy Rapacon; “Keep Pet Costs on a Tight Leash”; from Kiplinger’s Personal Finance published November 2009;; p. 1 of April 29, 2010 10:54am printout.
94Based on an Associated Press article appearing as “U.S. to get 3-D TV this week” appearing in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, March 10, 2010, p. C-8.
93David Ellis; “Banks nervously await new credit card law”; published February 19, 2010: 2:38 PM ET Time;; p. 2 of February 19, 2010 5:07 PM printout.
92Sally Jenkins, “Does Football Cost Too Much?,” Parade, November 29, 2009, p. 14.
91An Associated Press article by Anne D’Innocenzio appearing as “7 Wise Ways to Use Your Gift Cards” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, January 3, 2010, p. D-1.
90A McClatchey article appearing as “Americans putting their money where their mouth is” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, April 10, 2007, p. C-7.
89An Associated Press article by Pervaiz Shallwani appearing as “Changes in the Cheese World” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, March 5, 2008, p. C-1.
88Emily Walker; “Rising Obesity Rates Increase Nation’s Healthcare Tab”; published July 27, 2009;; p. 1 of 7/27/09 6:30 PM printout.
87 An Associated Press article by Madlen Read appearing as “Downturn taking some gloss off of weddings,” in Champaign (Ill.) News Gazette, May 18, 2008, p. C-1.
86An Associated Press article by Tali Arbel appearing as “Prices making people think outside the bottle,” in Champaign (Ill.) News Gazette, June 18, 2008, p. B-9.
85An Associated Press article appearing as “Poll: Many parents not into playing video games with kids” in Champaign (Ill.) News Gazette, November 15-21, 2007, p. 11.
84Janie B. Cheaney, “Fighting over scraps,” World, March 8/15, 2008, p. 36.
83Jessica Ramirez, “The Netflix Effect,” Newsweek, October 2, 2006, p. 12.
82An Associated Press article appearing as “Candy proving to be sweet spot in trying times,” in the Champaign (Ill) News Gazette, June 24, 2008, p. B-6.
81Paul Clolery, “Tidings of Good Cheer,” The Non Profit Times, December 1, 2008, p. 12.
80Karen Halligan. “Should You Get Pet Insurance?” Parade Magazine April 22, 2007, p. 18.
79“Ashes to Diamonds,” World Magazine September 20, 2008, p. 15.
78Gary Weiss, “Don’t Get Clobbered By Credit Cards!” Parade August 10, 2008, p. 4.
77Daniel McGinn. “Man of Leisure,” Newsweek, October 2, 2006, p.9.
76An Environmental Almanac article by Rob Kanter appearing as “Working toward a more sustainable home landscape” in the Champaign (Ill.) News Gazette, 5/27/07, p. E-4.
75An Associated Press article by Madlen Read appearing as “Downturn taking some gloss off of weddings” in the Champaign (Ill.) News Gazette, 5/18/08, p. C-1.
74John Sicher, ed.; ÒSpecial Issue: Top-10 CSD Results for 2007Ó.; Beverage Digest, Volume 52, No. 5; 3/12/2008;; p. 1 of 4/12/2008 printout.
73 By Martin Marty from “Purse Race” appearing in Christian Century, December 11, 2007, p. 55.
72 From “The Not-so-Mushy Statistics During Valentine’s Day” by Neoli Marcos appearing on, January 15, 2008.
71 From “Fast-food chain sets its sights on world of lattees” appearing in Champaign (Ill.) News Gazette, November 19, 2007, p.A-7.
70 From The State of Church Giving through 2005: Abolition of the Institutional Enslavement of Overseas Missions, by John and Sylvia Ronsvalle (Champaign, IL: empty tomb, inc., October 2007), p. 110. Retail theft statistic source: Associated Press, “Shoplifting, Employee Theft on the Rise,” appearing in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, June 14, 2007, p. C-9.
69 From “Fleeting Fragrances” by Aude LaGorce of MarketWatch, appearing in Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, January 21, 2007, p. C-1.
68 Steve Brown, “The Peak of Home Sizes” The Dallas Morning News, run in Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette February 18, 2007
67 Robert J. Samuelson, “The Economix Mega-Worry,” Newsweek, January 8, 2007
66 An Associated Press article appearing as “Big homes sprouting up even as families shrink” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, May 23, 2007
65 An Associated Press article appearing as “Wardrobes for teens include luxury items” in the Champaign(Ill.) News-Gazette, August 9, 2007
64 A 52-year-old banker quoted in an article by Michael Granberry for The Dallas Morning News in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, May 2, 2006, C-1.
63 Michael Tarm “Legions of grown men devote free time to hobby” Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, December 24, 2006
62 “Barbie Backlash” Parade, December 24, 2006
61 A Providence Journal article appearing as “Valentine’s means love, big business” by Paul Grimaldi in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, January 26, 2006, C-9.
60 An Associated Press article appearing as “Watchers Go to Far Reaches to Follow Fowl” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, January 26, 2006, C-3.
59 An article by David Bradley for AP Weekly Features in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, January 7, 2006, C-6.
5850 Appearing in an online article entitled “$125.7 bln of consumer electronics will be sold in 2005” at
57 Appearing in an online article dated January 1, 2005, entitled “Self-Actualization Drives Spending on Entertainment and Recreation” at
56 An Associated Press article entitled “Retailers see boom in dorm decor sales”, appearing in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, August 10, 2005, B-10.
55 A Knight Ridder Newspapers article appearing as “American’s race for space fuels boom in self-storage” by John Austin, appearing in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, September 17 2005, C-7.
54 A Knight Ridder Newspapers article appearing as “Close-to-Custom made shoes for the average guy” appearing in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, December 24, 2005, C-4.
53 An online Reuters article titled “Video game sales up in 2005,” posted on the SBC Yahoo News Web site
52 An Associated Press article appearing as ” ‘Meet the Fockers’ holds off horror flick” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, January 10, 2005, B-8.
51 Appearing in an online article dated January 7, 2005, entitled “Jewelry Report, 2004: The Who, What, Where, How Much and Why of Jewelry Shopping” at
50 A Knight Ridder Newspapers article appearing as “Going Mainstream in a Stressed Society” in Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, May 22, 2005, E-6.
49 Scott Burns in a column for the Universal Press Syndicate, entitled “What I Learned on my Summer Vacation” in Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, July 10, 2005, C-5.
48 Online statistics provided by the Web site Cost of, at the specific URL of
47 An article by Mackenzie Carpenter reporter for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette appearing in Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, May 2, 2004, E-5.
46 A Knight Ridder Newspapers article appearing as “Romance Can Be Costly, But There Are Ways To Save” by Jennifer Openshaw, appearing in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, August 26, 2004, D-8.
45 An Associated Press article appearing as “Diet soda inches up in soft drink market,” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, December 22, 2004, C-9.
44 An article by Patrick Walters an Associated Press writer appearing in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, March 26,2004, D-2.
43 An article by Johnnie L. Roberts appearing in Newsweek magazine, July 5, 2004, p. 51-53.
42 Bridal Guide InfoSource USA Today Snapshot, by Darryl Haralson and Keith Simmons, USA Today, June 23, 2004, Section B, pg. 1
41 An article by Andrew Tobias appearing in Parade magazine, July 13, 2003, p. 14.
40 An article by Joel Stein entitled “It’s a Dog’s Life” appearing in Time magazine, May 19, 2003, p. 60.
39 An article by Ellen Lee entitled “Bridal Bliss Needn’t Break the Bank” from the Contra Costa Times online website. Web address:, posted March 31, 2003.
38 A factoid provided by Alison McLean appearing in Smithsonian magazine, July 2003, p. 15.
37 An Associated Press article by Anne D’Innocenzio entitled “Tween Girls Are Getting Attention At Last” appearing in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, October 19, 2003,C-5
36 A column by Robert J. Samuelson in Newsweek magazine entitled “Show Kids the Money?”, February 10, 2003, pg. 61.
35 An Associated Press article appearing as “Companies Look To Teen Buying Trends,” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, July 4, 2003, C-7.
34 An article by Robert J. Samuelson, entitled “Adventure in Agelessness” appearing in Newsweek magazine, November 3, 2003, p. 47.
33 Online statistics provided by the Web site Box Office Mojo, at
32 An article by David Noonan and Jerry Adler appearing in Newsweek, May 13, 2002, p.53.
31 An Associated Press article appearing as “Teeth Whitening Kits Not for Teens” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, January 27, 2002, E-6.
30 An Associated Press article appearing as “Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Buy” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, August 22, 2002, D-1.
29 A San Francisco Chronicle article appearing as “Weighing Risks of Liposuction” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, July 5, 2002, D-3.
28 A Kansas City Star article appearing as “Limos Rides for Children? Opinions Differ on Values and Rewards” in Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, June 13, 2002, D-1.
27 An article by Debra Pressey, staff writer, appearing as “Cooked to Order” in Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, October 29, 2002, D-1.
26 An article by Dawn Anfuso entitled “Consumers Will Pay For Content” at the iMedia Connection Website located at
25 An Associated Press article appearing as “Firm Books 100 Future Flights into Space” on AOL News, May 5, 2001.
24 American Way magazine, April 15, 2001, pg. 22.
23 A Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article appearing as “New Study Says Global Warming Could Kill Trout” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, June 17, 2001, A-7.
22 A Scripps Howard News Service article appearing as “Lottery Game” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, September 9, 2001, B-1.
21 A George Will column appearing as “Free Schools from Commercialism” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, May 6, 2001, B-2.
20 An Associated Press article appearing as “Accessories Keep Lawn and Garden Industry Growing” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, August 19, 2001, C-5.
19 A Knight Ridder Newspapers article appearing as “New Technology Really Hits Home in Texas” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, May 26, 2001, D-4.
18 A Business Week online article appearing as “This Three-way Slugfest is No Game” at, December 13, 2001.
17 An Associated Press article appearing as “Vintage Toy Maker Trying to Regain its Punch” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, July 8, 2001, C-4.
16 An Associated Press article appearing as “Born Into Slavery” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, July 22, 2001, B-1.
15 An Associated Press article appearing as “Vending Machines Turning High-Tech” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, April 1, 2001, C-2.
14 A Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article appearing as “Gumballs: A Bit of History We Can All Chew On” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, April 1, 2001, E-7.
13 A Raleigh News & Observer article appearing as “The Easter Bunny is Taking on Santa” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, April 13, 2001, C-12.
12 A Press Enterprise article appearing as “Canine Crown Puts a Smile on the Face of One Dog Owner” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, May 30, 2001, B-6.
11 A Scripps Howard News Service article appearing as “More People Buy Second Homes” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, May 12, 2000, C-10.
10 A George Will column appearing as “Where Bourgeois and Bohemians Meet” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, April 9, 2000, B-2.
9 An Associated Press article appearing as “Hershey Faces New Challenges in Technology” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, April 23, 2000, C-4.
8 Data from U.S. Census Bureau, Statistical Abstract of the United States:2000, pg. 758.
7 An article by Kirby Pringle, staff writer, appearing as “Fast Food: How America (and the world) Traded Genteel Dining for a Good, Fast Meal” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, January 23, 2000, E-1.
6 An Associated Press article appearing as “Living High at the Millenium” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, May 24, 1999, C-7.
5 An article appearing online at the URL
4 A Springfield State Journal Register article appearing as “Christian Cards a Growing Business” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, August 29,1999, C-4.
3 An Associated Press article appearing as “More People Hiring Pros to Run Big Homes” in the Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, March 15, 1999, B-2.
2Jerry Adler, et al., “Been There, Done That”, Newsweek, July 19, 1993, pg. 44.
1Quote attributed to empty tomb, inc.