The very idea that the universe created itself is logically contradictory.
THIS HANDHELD SHOT of the moon was taken in Streetsville, Ontario, CANADA in August, 2011 with a BRIDGE CAMERA set at approximately 840mm zoom.
A bridge camera represents a significant advancement in digital photographic technology whereby a single camera (without changing up lenses) is able to capture almost the full gamut of popular focal lengths from wide-angle to telephoto 24-840mm.
Here, I used a $400 Canon POWERSHOT SX30 IS 35X Zoom which is also able to capture HD videos in stereo sound.
If you are looking for a no nonsense camera this Christmas, I would recommend a bridge camera. While photographic quality is not quite as good as what a D-SLR would produce, it is still very, very, good and would absolutely satisfy the needs of most folk.
Based on personally conducted testing and performance I can only recommend two bridge cameras in addition to the one that I have already acknowledged.
Everyone should have a bridge camera! If you don't have one already, run out and buy Canon's POWERSHOT SX40 IS (35X Zoom Digic 5 processor with Full HD 1080 stereo movie capture) or SONY's Cyber-Shot DSC-HX100V (30X Zoom-starting at 27mm with Full HD 1080 stereo capture and iSweep Panoramic photo-capture).
The Canon has the better zoom, while the SONY has incredible panoramic photo capabilities.