It's very popular at this time for professional photographers to advise everyone to shoot in Camera Raw. And I can see why... I shoot in Raw and love it. However, I do feel like Raw is not for everyone, or at least it is not for everyone right at this moment. So I don't like it when I hear people advising others that they "should" shoot in Raw, without explaining what Raw can do for you, and considering when it might be simply too much.
That's why, in my digital photography course, we discuss the advantages and disadvantages of shooting in Raw, and I let each student make their own decision about whether or not Raw is right for them at this time.
If your goal is to creatively control the quality of your photos, and learn how to control every aspect of your photo, you might want to consider Raw. The question is really "What's your comfort level with Raw and reworking images?" If you feel like Photoshop or Photoshop Elements makes it easy for you to open a Raw file, I would say "go for Raw", because it sounds like you find Raw intuitive and easy to use. It's only when you don't find Raw intuitive that I recommend letting the camera make all the processing choices at the time of shooting.
Having said all this, it is perfectly okay to shoot in JPEG, if that is what is required to keep you shooting. I would much rather have you work in JPEG than not take any pictures because the Raw conversion process stops you in your tracks. Interpreting Raw files is an art, and it takes a lot of time, so leaving that challenge for later is a perfectly acceptable choice to make.