As most of you know, Goblin lost his job at the end of January. He's about to start working as an LNA for about the same pathetic income he's been drawing from NH unemployment. However, unemployment benefits will run out in September/October time frame. So, a job with the same income is a good thing.
That being said, we're trying to keep our expenditures down to the sane. We are still trying to finish our basement, but at a pretty slow rate. We just had an electrician give us an estimate for the remaining electrical work. We were thrilled to learn that we could get what we desired for $650. Still, that's a buttload of money right now. We can deal with it, but we won't shake it off as easily as we would have in December of 2008.
Also, while I was on Star Island all of the pictures I took had a pink line across the top, and some of the shots had pink tinges to them overall. I doctored the photos as best I could. Then, I tinkered with the camera (SD card, battery, lense) to see if I could alleviate the problem. No go. So, I decided that I should replace the camera. That's a huge need verses want issue.
I do not NEED a digital camera. I could get by with the odd functioning of my current (5 year old) camera. However, taking pictures is one of my stress-alleviating activities. I had planned on replacing my Canon S400 Elph with a DSLR at some point. However, low-end DSLRs are nearly twice as expensive as a reasonable mid-range digital point and shoot camera. So, I did a fair amount of research on DPnS Canons (since I really did love my Canon).
The current equivalent to my S400 is the SD1200 IS. It can be had for $199-ish. I read all the reviews and it seemed to fair fine to good. However, several reviewers said that they preferred the earlier model, the SD1100 IS. Since the SD1100 IS is the older model, its harder to find. When you can find it, the price can vary from $159 to $279 (mostly towards the higher end). I also decided that I preferred it in brown. This narrowed my options even more. (Why do I have to make these things hard on myself?)
After checking with a few brick-and-mortar stores, and nearly a dozen online purveyors, I placed an order for the camera (in brown) with a vendor that offered a 3 year extended warranty for $29.95. Including the extended warranty, I spent just under $190. Again, more than we can easily shake off, but hopefully worth the money for the satisfaction it will give me to have a reasonable and fully functional digital camera again. [I also ordered an extra battery and a 2Gb media card from Amazon, where the prices were better.]
I am still somewhat ashamed of myself on this purchase considering how many families out there are being forced to choose between paying their mortgage and feeding their children while one or both bread winners endures unemployment. I am so grateful that we are merely being forced to be more circumspect in our purchases and are not having to make such heart-rending choices.