CoffeeShop Photography provides free tutorials and actions for Photoshop and Elements. The actions for Photoshop work in version 7 and above and the actions for Elements have only been tested in PSE 6.0
The tutorials are related to the actions, not how to run them, but how to create the same effects without the action. Looking at those tutorials makes you appreciate just how useful actions can be!
Here is an example of just one of the many free actions sets Rita has made available on her blog: