Meet my new pal; the Activa 220. She (and I get to call her "she" because Stephen calls his boat a "she") and I have become great friends and we've done a bit of bonding already. I'm amazed at how quiet this machine is. Stephen asked if it was running and I had to reassure him that it indeed was.
The little one was a good sport, being carted from thrift shop to thrift shop, fabrics stores and finally the Bernina dealer after refusing to nap. I spent over an hour going from machine to machine (luckily Stephen works next door to the dealer and was able to watch her while I spent my time asking questions) and after debating if I really wanted to open a credit card to get that higher end model, I spotted the 220 and fell in love.
So she's here to stay. I'm pretty happy with the fact that I won't need to upgrade later on down the road. I think this machine does all and more than I'll ever need. Doesn't my old machine in the background look rather sad pushed aside? Poor thing. It served me well.
Thank you for all of your suggestions yesterday! They were certainly reassuring and I never would have made the leap without your help.