So I have managed to finish reading Seven Spires. I will post a (probably lengthy) review of it later in the week, but short version: I really liked it on a lot of levels, and in order to make sure I don't gush endlessly about how great it was, I'll have to work hard in order to come up with at least some constructive criticism that isn't a short list of typographic errors.
I have yet to really start gaming extensively, and I am not that happy about that. I should get a chance this week to remedy that, though. On the other hand, I have managed to make quite a bit of progress in Baba Is You.
Politics continues to be weird in the US. Let's just say there's a reason my mother is celebrating Christmas and New Year's (and probably my completed Ph.D as well) on January 21, and it has everything to do with Mom feeling that the year isn't finally over until that one big event on the 20th. (You know the one.)
To close this entry happily: I received an email stating that my physical diploma is in the mail (or rather UPS) and that I should receive it soon. This is rather exciting; now I just need to ensure the dogs don't eat it when it arrives…