Okay, so... I did it.
Yeah, I had thought about making the switch to a real notebook, but other considerations ruled the day this time.
We have an aging machine that our girls use and it's just not cutting the mustard anymore: the hard drive is making odd groaning and sawing noises, it won't connect to the internet, it freezes without warning, etc. So (now, shhhh! Don't tell them) They're getting the Inspiron 1200 that I'm using to type this post. I've spent the last 18 months training this lovely piece of equipment (I've never had a problem with it or with the company. In fact, I've had very good experiences with Dell customer service. I realize that I'm probably the only person who can say that, nonetheless it is true).
Anyway, my girls are getting this one and I'm getting the new notebook. I've just spent the last hour or so getting ready for the big migration, which should occur in 3-5 working days.
If I had the dough, I'd just switch us all over to Macs. Whew, that's a lotta mail! Maybe someday.