New Pentax K-r user.
You can use your K-r the same way you used a P&S in all-auto-mode, but I guess you got it to enter a territory beyond this.
Thanks for the input guys, I certainly didn't purchase this to use just as a P&S, and I have already read the manual over a few nights (first time in a long time its actually been worth reading the manual of a new electronic device).
I've also watched a few 10min tutorial videos on youtube which included lessons on aperture settings and how it effects DOF, and ISO and shutter speeds. And found a decent E-Book based on SLR photography for beginners which i'm getting through too. So i can guarantee you I don't plan on using "auto" mode much at all.
I'm heading to Thailand in November so i'm hoping I can have a bit of knowledge and practice up my sleeves by then
Edit: Also i found this link on another site ( http://focustestchart.com/focus10.pdf ) that is a printable focus template to check how your camera is focusing and if it is BF or FF. Quite handy.
My K-r came with well calibrated AF system, so I didn't need to bother with focus charts. If there would be anything wrong with any aspect of a new camera I would return it instead of messing around with it. I think many beginers tend to mess around first and make things more complicated instead of getting a well working camera in first place. Lots of fuss comes from not being familiar with stuff.
A tip for your trip: use some of the built in presets like the cross-processing or miniature-effect or the HDR (the last one works really well even handheld)!
tell me what your 3 favorite lenses are - and I'll tell you what kind of a photographer you are...