Well the saga or my laptop lingers on. I ended up taking it to Best Buy for repair. The HP help desk lady just freaked me out too much. Thought a face-to-face experience would be better. Unfortunately, not sure if that's the case. Without rehashing it all, the kid I was working with was kind of a jerk & was very inexperienced. When I got my computer back last Thursday night I discovered that it still wasn't working correctly. There were several files & applications missing, but the scariest was that all my Outlook data was gone. Archived emails, calendar, contacts everything. In fact, I couldn't get Outlook to open at all! I took it back on Friday & it's still there. Fortunately, I'm working with a tech who is MUCH better than the first guy. They still can't find my Outlook data, but at least they seem to understand the problem & be working on it.
What have I learned from this experience?? Back up your data! I have an external hard drive for backups, I'm just not good about using it. This will change when (if?) I get my computer back. I've also discovered this weekend that you can sync your Outlook data with Yahoo calendars pretty easily. Could kick myself for not doing that!!!
All the time spent on this computer issue has slowed down my jewelry work. Also, I can't post any pics to share with you without my laptop. I made a really cool necklace this week that I'd love to share! Hopefully I'll have better news next week.