just wanted to throw in my 2cents, i know i always appreciated it when people who had actually finished posted encouragement!
i started in october 2009 then finished october 2010 after being an lpn for 1 year. i worked part time and used study guide 101. i took the cpne in mansfield, ohio. (excellent site). i took lynn's workshop and used rob's videos. one thing i was disapointed in was saunders rn nclex comprehensive review. the questions were about 10x easier than the actual nclex. i would not recomend it.
excelsior is difficult, but it is doable. hang in there.