Until you actually export (share is the current term) your timeline to a new video file, Premiere Elements (and Premiere Pro) are "non-destructive" editors, in that your project only consists of "pointers" to what you want to do inside the original file... the original file is not touched in any way AND the original file IS required
So... since you deleted the original files, your project "pointers" are pointing to files that do not exist
Sadly, you have just learned a hard lesson... do not delete/move video files until you are 100% done with your project
>new user of Premier Elements
Online User Guide http://help.adobe.com/en_US/premiereelements/using/index.html
-Page to download current PDF http://helpx.adobe.com/premiere-elements.html
Saving & Sharing http://forums.adobe.com/thread/1137128
-Sharing to DVD or BluRay http://forums.adobe.com/thread/1137645
-Sharing for Movies http://forums.adobe.com/thread/1051093
-Sharing for Computer http://forums.adobe.com/thread/1058237
Steve's Basic Training Tutorials... steps are the same for several versions
-and http://prodesigntools.com/four-hours-free-video-tutorials-new-photoshop-elements-9-pse9.ht ml
-and http://prodesigntools.com/five-hours-free-tutorials-photoshop-and-premiere-elements-7-and- 8.html
Another help site http://muvipix.com/ or http://muvipix.com/phpBB3/
Don't give up hope yet. Try googling recovering deleted files. I believe there is software that may help you recover some if not all of your files.
Do you have any of the .mts files remaining in your camera internal memory or SD card or anywhere else?
If you do, there is a possibility that you can get the files back (edits intact) using Replace Footage.
Whatever the outcome (hoping for a good one), moving forward, use the Premiere Elements Project Archiver Archive or Copy option to save projects. In that case, you can delete the source media without getting hit with those Missing Media (Media Offline) terrible messages.
You cannot delete or move the source media that went into a project (project.prel) after the project has been saved/closed without getting hit with the Missing Media problem. If those files were still on the computer, you should be able to use the Missing Media messages (preferred route in my experiences) or Replace Footage to recover from that bad situation.
We will be watching for further developments...good ones I hope.
Great reply and thank you. All I can say is “ouch” from hitting my head against the wall for deleting the files. You are correct; it was/is a very hard lesson.
As Tom said in message #2, you MAY be able to recover deleted files... if they have not been overwritten by something else