So I attempted to reinstall the previous version of iTunes and it would no longer recognize my library, since it had been authorized to the newest version--ack...kill me!
It's not in the budget at the moment (hubby just took a 10% pay cut, but still has a job...for that we are very thankful) to buy the recently update version of my Mac Mini and we're expecting Apple to release it with OS 10.6 installed by the end of the year, so we're holding out for that.
My computer is nearly 4 years old and is running 10.4.11. I'd never reinstalled the OS before today, but several Mac-tastic friends on RunningAHEAD.com reassured me that it was easy and would almost certainly fix a host of issues and speed up my 'puter. They were SO totally right! In addition to reinstalling the OS I also deleted a bunch of programs I never use (like Garage Band) and uninstalled others that I haven't used in forever--I can always reinstall them if I ever see the need, which isn't likely for a lot of these memory hogs.
I can't believe how painless that was...I really should have done that long ago. Just to be safe we copied everything of importance to the external HD, but it was unnecessary, as everything was safely saved automatically in a folder on the main HD containing everything from the previous set-up...I can simply delete that folder once I am certain that everything is in order.
I *heart* my Mac! :)