Hi Sheila, good question. I have an iPad one, like it very much and use it a lot, but the key thing to remember with them, they are a web consumption device, your not going to write you Magnum opus on one.
I use mine for reading ,surfing the web and the odd game, and for that it works well. I have also just bought a little bluetooth keyboard, which makes it even more useful, but there is a big but to all Apple products, you get tied into their eco system. Lots of people are happy with this, and iTunes becomes their second home, but I prefer things little more open.
If I went into a store today to get a tablet, I would buy without doubt the Asus Transformer prime with keyboard. All my work colleagues have now switched to these, and they are very impressive. I ended up buying a keyboard for mine, which added another 70 pounds to the price, so the Asus comes out cheaper. I would also have a look at the Amazon Kindle fire, which is far cheaper that the other tablets, but might offer enough of what you want it to do.
They are also more open, and will link to any other operating system easily, as they have a standard USB port, the iPad does not. They run with Android, which has a far larger collection of free applications , which you can get through it's market place, but you are not tied to it.
The iPad is a good device, and I'm not going to say not get one, but define what you are going to use it for, and have a good look at the alternatives. When I bought mine, there were no alternatives, but today there are.
I would comment that I travel a lot for work, and that is when it really comes into it's own. If you already have access to a good laptop in the house, that is small and convenient to use on your lap then the use case for the device becomes diminished. If like me at home your constantly creating content, then something like a Google Chrome book might be better, and that is what I will be getting soon for just that purpose.