Okay Josh, maybe I can help you out here without BEING EXCEPTIONALLY RUDE!!!
When Linux boots, it will give you a login prompt. That's just the way it is built. Once you login at this prompt, GNOME can load on top of the kernel and give you that graphical approach you desire. If you are confused, just log on as root. Type "root" and enter the password IF you set up one.
Then at the next prompt type "startx" to load the X server and trigger GNOME.
If you feel comfortable editing a file in linux, you can set X to start automatically when you boot up linux.... The file /etc/inittab is the one to worry about..... find the line in this file that reads "id:3:initdefault" and change the 3 to a 4..
If you have any problems, just ask...