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Suggest that you download a trial, fully functioning version of Photoshop Elements:
Try it out.
The latest version of Elements (PSE11) has a quick edit and guided edit sections where you can perform edits in a couple of clicks to achieve convincing results. The full edit (named expert) is then available as you become more experienced.
In the last ten years a whole host of video tutorials has become available on YouTube and other sites. A good place to start is Adobe TV. If you like the look of what you see, you can download the 30 day free trial.
Otherwise Picasa will do all the basic editing stuff and it’s free from Google.
So it really depends what you want to achieve and how much time you can devote to learning.
Thank you for the suggestion! I will check it out!
I have being using Picasa, but feel limited with creativity. It has been great for organizing photos, and basic editing. I am looking to get a little more advanced editing, I am able to invest the time to learn the software. Just from previous experience (the software i had purchased is ten years old) i had no clue how to get started i spent many frustrating hours attempting to figure it out. I am looking for something that is technically basic (like Picasa) but will allow me to grow in editing as i become more experienced. Thank you for your help!