I just wanted to report that thanks in great part to the help I've received in Bike Forum (primarily the Road cyling thread), I bit the bullet and bought the new bike I've been looking for. I finally chose the Fuji Team bike (carbon frame, 105/Ultegra components), and was lucky enough to get an incredible price on it at Performance Bike (List $2499, purchase price with sale and 20% one day only coupon - $1190).
I've been out on the bike and it's amazing the difference between my old steel battle axe and the light carbon frame. It took a while to get used to the different gearing, but it's a joy to be out on the road.
Thanks to everyone for their help.