Re: Camera for beginner - nature scenes, twilight hours, night shots.
Refurbished Canon 60D with 18-135mm IS from Canon Direct Store. It's listed at $1039.20 but if you take advantage of their Canon Loyalty Program you'll get 20% off. Then you can use the savings to buy other accessories (memory cards, bag, etc).
This will get you more reach (135 vs 55),
swivel screen would be useful for awkward angles, 9 cross-type AF points (more sensitive) vs. 1, faster burst rate, better build quality, and top mount LCD for quicker adjustments.
If you do decide on this though, you better do it quick because alot of people take advantage of CLP and newer bodies tend to go out of stock very quick.
Hope this helped you in deciding.
EDIT: I didn't know the T3i also had a swivel screen.
2007 Mazdaspeed3 GT