I neglected to mention it last night in my post because I was tired, but yesterday I started working with my professor Dr. Takamiya on her research project over the summer (a lovely birthday present). We didn't do much yesterday, but today I got started in earnest, and I must say, if the rest of my summer goes like today, it will be a good summer.
I spent about six hours coding today, and I loved it (I even forgot to eat lunch in my zeal at discovering how to run IRAF through Python bindings...). It was quite enjoyable to spend a day working with my head and learning new things (like how to find and access files in Python, for example). I've so far managed to write and debug about half of a script that will allow us to quickly convert a large number of picture files from one format into another that we need. All in all, a very productive day, and I can hardly wait to get to work tomorrow.