In 2006 I took the leap and upgraded my camera to this:
Yes, that's a Nikon D40X. Going from a point-and-shoot camera to a SLR camera is akin to painting with oils after scribbling with crayons. Big time investment. Big time return....IF you know what you're doing. And, honestly, five years later I still don't know what I'm doing. I'm embarrassed to admit that I really don't understand 85% of the features on my camera. I just jumped in and started taking pictures without doing any prep work. Back then, it was easy -- vacation photos looked great (you don't need to be Ansel Adams to take a decent shot of the Grand Canyon). Then we had a baby and, boom, a new subject to photograph. A sleeping baby is fairly easy to photograph too. Skip ahead and I've got a squirmy almost three-year old who doesn't like to smile for the camera. The time has come for me to expand my photography skills. So I'm committing the next several months to reading up on my Nikon and practicing with various settings. I hope to take some awesome pictures this summer.