Well, the three year warrantee on the laptop paid off. Apparently the warrantee company did not want to pay for yet another round of repairs, as they decided to "junkout" the computer (which was 2.5 years old). This means that they gave us back the original purchase price of the computer to apply toward a new computer.
Soooooo...... last night I tore out to Best Buy to pick out my new machine! I had two friends (thanks John and Shawn!!!) consulting on the phone and together the three of us decided on a pretty Dell. (OK, I'm not sure that a laptop can be considered pretty, unless you count those freaking awesome red ones that were wayyyyy out of my price range.) But, it is black, shiny, and it actually works!!!! To me, that is the absolute defination of pretty.
I am spending the next few days getting programs loaded so that I will be ready to go when the semester starts on Monday....did I mention this is my LAST semester???? YEAH!!!!!!!