jdsher, thank you for the vote of confidence! If there's one thing I might talk about with confidence, it would be how to start as an adult and not give up, how to take yourself seriously as a budding (as oppossed to wilting) pianist etc.
Since I didn't start piano until age 30 (oh, now you know how old I am
I still consider myself an adult beginner. I find that, in terms of my "piano needs" and what I struggle with etc, I don't have much in common with people who've played piano since they were kids.
When I first started, we lived out in the country and there wasn't anyone to teach me close by, so I practiced on my own for maybe 4 months. I taught myself the bass clef (already knew treble) and then worked through a very easy songbook so I could play a simple song or two.
Then we moved (thank goodness) and I looked for a teacher right away. I called around and asked lots of questions on the phone, had a trial lesson with someone who was awful, finally met my teacher and I have been taking lessons from her ever since.
Right now I am playing George Winston's Variations on Pachelbel's Canon (do you know it? I find it much more challenging than the standard arrangements. I've been working on it for months) Also since Christmas is over, I just started 2 new pieces, short songs by the Japanese composer Joe Hisaishi.
For Christmas this year I worked up a full set (by my definition! seven songs) of Christmas songs (most were very easy arrangements and two were more elaborate) and I played them at two Christmas parties. (and failed horribly at the first one!
I also have a set of songs that I always try to keep "playable" so that I can play for people when they come over etc. I play one of these songs almost very day so that they remain playable.
My playable list includes a standard arrangement of the Canon in D, Summer by Joe Hisaishi, and a simpler (but very nice) version of the main theme from the movie The Piano. I also love to sing and accompany myself, so I sometimes play/sing Let It Be (a bit low for a woman to sing to, but don't tell anyone) and a few Japanese pop songs.
I always wanted to be able to play for people, and early on in my practice I had the experience of playing a song in a recital (from memory) and then a few months later, someone asked me to play it and I couldn't even finish the first few measures. After that, I made it a goal to develop a set of songs that I could always play, and now I try to keep adding to that.
Also, I play Christmas songs every year and another goal is to increase my Christmas set each year. This has helped my reading too because I play some of the same songs every year, so rather than fully memorize them, I try to be able to play from sight (I say it this way b/c it's not sight-reading since they are songs I know). This year was the first year that I actually played my Christmas set out in public though. I'm a shaky-hand person, so it's a constant challenge.
Well, now I've just rambled on forever here! Sorry! Don't people rate members on this forum? My rating will carry a warning "never ask ShiroKuro about herself" kyaaaa :p