Okay, we're ready.

Last night, my mom said, "Okay, I'm ready to open Christmas presents." I think that's the first time she's been the antsy one. (Usually it's Dad or Hannah. Of course, Hannah no longer lives here (though she stops by to visit several times a week), and Dad had just finished shopping the day before.) Maybe it's because most of us finished shopping early this year. I got (what would usually be) my hardest shopping done last summer, because an opportunity just fell in my lap, and I think mom got started pretty early too.

I do have something left to wrap still, but my shopping has been done for nearly a week, and Sarah (who is easy to buy for) was the last one I finished; the hard shopping has been done for even longer. Normally about this time I'd have either Dad or Hannah left to buy for (both of whom generally tend toward "hard to buy for") and would be resigning myself to doing something suboptimal for lack of better ideas. Not this year. It's been a good year.

I've been playing Christmas songs, in addition to the primer material and some hymns, on the piano. Mom's been playing Christmas songs too. She plays them much better, of course. But I play them better than I did a week ago. I'm still having a bit of trouble with Joy to the World though, which is one of my favorites. And of course I have scarcely even looked at playing harmony parts yet.

The primer book has started me in on chords, but only in the most introductory fashion, i.e., the left hand has one chord (usually CEG) to play and only plays it when the right hand, which is playing the rest of the song, plays a certain note (usually C). Gotta start somehow, I guess. Maybe next week I can advance to playing two chords.