As Annie points out, there are things we lose along the way to becoming parents. Today I've been thinking about all those little things. They include: -a belly ring -red mini skirt (size 4) ~for some reason this one wounds me deeply -the ability to relax while shopping -going to movies in the theater -overnight backpacking trips -playing pool -sleeping in on weekends -sleeping all night, period -taking showers alone -never discussing "poop-ey" -swearing when frustrated -feeling righteous (instead of guilty) about working
But ho, this list would not be complete without looking at the other side of the coin. Any good analyst looks at the "Pros" along with the "Cons" when balancing a situation. What has being a parent gained me? Let's see... -an entertainer -more patience than I ever thought I had -a fresh take on all the little things in life like flowers, animals, rainbows and snow -someone to blame when I'm cranky for no good reason (hey, I'm sure she blames me, too when she's cranky) -becoming one of the most important people in my daughter's life -a reason to stay home and not have to rush off to a job every morning -someone who appreciates home-made tomato soup -an unlimited supply of kisses and giggles -a reason to buy new clothes every 3 months -waking up to "Good morning, beautiful" and a hug from my little girl
All in all, I'd say it's well worth the sacrifice. Besides, the only thing on the the first list that I can't ever get back is the red miniskirt. And even if I did fit into it, why would I want to wear it now? I'm someone's mommy.
A while back I bought some malabrigo in this fun colorway, Tigerlilly, to use when I needed a pick-me-up. When I came down nasty with a cold a few weeks back I decided it was time for a bit of fuzzy indulgence and get-well knitting. I finished one footie and started to feel better so I left the second undone. Apparently that was just leaving the door open for me to get sick again (which I did, right after Thanksgiving) so I had to finish the other one to keep from getting sick anymore.
Emma spies me using the camera and must come in for a closer look.
"Look at me! I have to be in the picture, too, Mom!"
Pattern: Cabled Footies from One Skein Yarn: 1 hank of malabrigo in Tigerlilly Modifications: I did a short row heel on these and a rounded toe. I think it's called a star-toe but I'm not sure. (It's when you *k6, k2tog* repeat for one round, knit one round, *k5, k2tog* repeat for one round, knit one round...)
I really love this pattern and it's the third time I've knit it. I'm not much for doing the same thing twice but this one is a winner in my book. It's fast, pretty, wearable and warm. When I showed them to my husband he asked me who they were for. "Me!" I said. "About time," was his response. :)
I have a serious weakness for baby feet. Always have. Always will. I remember back when I wasn't interested in having children and the two things that always got me were baby shoes and paint swatches. Something about dressing tiny feet and painting children's rooms appealed to a part of me not governed by logic and the desire to sleep.
When Emma was born I can still remember those round little toes, soft soles never walked on and her narrow little heels that wouldn't keep cute little shoes and socks from falling off. I have footprints from when she was a week old that still make me melt.
In keeping with my love of baby feet, I've been busy making Christmas gifts for those little baby feet I see most often.
I found this pattern from the Sew, Mama, Sew! blog and it's so simple yet adorable. The pattern is for 0-6 months but I think it could go a bit beyond that. Not far enough for me to make Emma a pair, but I think it might fit up to 9 months on a small child. This blog has so many cool gift ideas that I need to get crackin' if I want to get a few more projects done in time to mail!
I am seriously the luckiest lady I know. Seriously. Seriously. (And I've been watching Grey's Anatomy, can you tell?)
Anyway, let me tell you my great news! I have a new job and it is quite literally my dream job for this stage of my life. I am going to be teaching 3 classes at the local college next spring and I can't even tell you how psyched I am. And lucky. Because they usually want you to have a PhD before you can teach at a 4-year institution but one of their faculty went on medical leave and they needed someone on short notice. Now I am really glad that I called and "checked in" on my application a few months back. Talk about luck! (At least on my part. I really hope the medical leave isn't a very serious condition on my future colleague's part. I would feel bad if my good fortune only came from someone else's misfortune.)
So, yay! Go me! I just landed my dream job. I've been wanting to teach for years now and this is so perfect. I only have to be on campus for about 9 hours per week, only 7 of them during the day. That means little miss will still get lots of time with me and I can do grading and presentations either when she's napping or during the evening.
What did I tell ya? Lucky. That should be my middle name.
It has been a long day. Some have had worse days, no doubt. But still, a long day. The potty training has begun in earnest in our household and it is not fun. And not easy. I suppose part of me blithely hoped (or perhaps fantasized is a better way to put it) that one day Emma would decide there would be no more of this kiddie crap (no pun intended) and simple decide to use her potty chair. As the case seems to be, she is sick of wearing diapers and not yet ready to wear panties. Today, before noon, we had 4 accidents. Bad accidents. It has occurred to me that potty training my daughter is going to be far more challenging than potty training any of my numerous pets has ever been.
When it comes to pets you can simply throw them outside. Rub their nose in it. Scold them. Keep them outside until they behave. With a child? No such luck. Instead I think I will have to work some serious voodoo. A friend of mine told me today that all potty training really is brainwashing. This makes sense. Now the problem I face is that mine opponent is an abnormally smart two-year old with limited facilities. I have tried reminding her every 30 - 45 minutes to use the potty but all that really does is annoy her and stress her out. I have tried putting diapers on her but she simply takes them off. I have bought her pretty panties and that excited her and I think dismayed her more than anything else when they got dirty. (In all reality I think I was more upset about them getting dirty than she was because, well, I am the one that gets to clean them.)
Side note: Oh my heck, I have never seen any child get so excited over Thomas the Tank Engine undies. She literally jumped up and down with excitement. hehehehehe
I shall have to try a new approach. Diapers at bedtime with jammies on backwards so she can't unzip them. Panties during the day at home, an available potty and no pressure. I will win her to the cause (if I can't make her wear diapers I really don't have a choice in whether or not I potty train her) but I will do it subtly. I will let her do it at her own time.
Meanwhile, does anyone know a good carpet cleaning service?
I made Emma another dress from some really cute corduroy a friend gifted me. I also decided to spice it up a bit this time with contrasting thread, a front pocket and a little bit of embroidery. Keep in mind that I hate hand stitching anything but this went so quickly it was fun and turned this simple dress into a lovely little outfit.
Sometimes I look at the things I make and I wonder if it's a waste of my time. I mean, I could just go buy her these things...but I take great pleasure from making little things for the ones I love. I love to hold her, make her toys, wrap her in blankets I stitched and dress her in lovely clothes I sewed. And besides, someday she can look at them and know I made them just for her.
In an alternate universe (AKA my dreams last night) I met PatrickDempsey...
How's that for a hook? Are you drooling yet? Well, if you're female and reading this I bet you are.
Anyway, I dreamed I was Christmas shopping for my nieces in a big mall and I kept getting turned around and going up and down escalators and lost as all heck when the eye of a tall, dark and handsome caught my eye. We kept running into each other as I ran the maze of this giant mall until we finally sat down on a bench and talked for a bit. Me: nervous around a super hot guy even in my dreams. Him: crushingly handsome in that almost floppy-puppy-dog kind of way.
Side note: In my dream I was single, not two-timing the handsome man I'm married to. Besides, doesn't the celebrity rule apply anyway? Hehehehehe
After a bit of stumbling conversation (on my part) and smoldering looks (on his part) I was torn from my dreams by the sound of a screaming babe. Poor little girl threw up twice last night and seems to have recovered today though why she threw up so much last night is a mystery. She is currently in the stage of "Mommy hold you," as she says it. She quite literally grabs my arms and wraps them around her and if I try to move one she grabs it and puts it right back around her. It seems today I will accomplish....absolute nothing. Maybe if I'm lucky she'll take a really long nap and I can go back to my dream. Of course, now I have this strange need to watch Grey's Anatomy...
This week has just been a madhouse every day it seems. Since I was out of commission and let Emma watch way too many movies I decided this week would be about books, games and crafts instead of screen based entertainment,
On Monday we went to the library and found more Thomas the Tank Engine books. I have no idea why she's so obsessed with trains right now, but she is. It's too funny to hear her go "choo choo" every time she hears one passing through.
On Tuesday we made beads and Christmas ornaments from flour dough that Emma painted after I baked them. They are so cute and super simple. I know Emma's Grandparents will be happy to have little ornaments painted by the Little Miss herself. :)
On Wednesday I made edible PlayDough and we had some friends over for a bit of squishing fun. It was so great! The playdough turned out perfect and the kids had a great time. I put a plastic table cloth on the floor and gave them my rolling pin, some cookie cutters, plastic forks and knives, and a cookie dropper. They proceeded to make cookies, snakes, snowmen, stars, hearts and all sorts of fun shapes. I just love watching kids use their imaginations to play!
Yesterday Emma and I trekked to Salt Lake City to visit with a friend and along the way we visited a store (new to me) called World Market. I finally found the Indian spices I need to make a proper Chicken Makhani. Yay!!
Today has been pretty busy so far, too. This morning we had friends over again and let the moms chat while the kids played. I know Emma's still young, but I really like the thought of her having regular playmates and "friends" around her age. My brother-in-law and his sweet girls should be here this evening so I've been bustling around doing laundry and making Pumpkin Muffins. I hope your weekend is great!
I put together the quilt, finished one footie and made a bit of progress on husband sweater #1. In payment, my new knitting books arrived yesterday!! I loooooooove them and just can't wait to use them. My new acquisitions are Traditional Fair Isle Knitting, Knitting without Tears and The Best of Interweave Knits. There is so much to learn from reading the first two and the third is almost pure eye candy. :)
On the cold front (ha ha!), I am slowly recovering. I finally filled the script I was given on Monday for a decongestant and it seems to be working, except it keeps making me really antsy and a bit anxious. Blah.
I have come to the realization that the crafting powers-that-be are holding my stuff hostage.
Exhibit A: About two months ago I ordered yarn to make a lovely sweater for my husband. Now, after two attempts to procure it and ordering mishaps, I still do not have said yarn.
Exhibit B: I ordered three knitting books that were shipped over a week and a half ago that have still not arrived.
Why, you ask, would my new stuff be held hostage? What makes me think such a devious plot is underway? Well, I have a theory that until I complete some of the projects I've begun I will not be allowed to have any new stuff. Kindof like a child that hasn't eaten it's green beans, I can't have more until I finish what i have...or at least make a reasonable amount of progress.
In the spirit of cooperation I have been working on the quilt I started last month that is still in pieces on the guest bedroom floor. All I have to do is put the border on and the top will be done.
Now, let's see if my stuff arrives in the mail today....
Me: sick, nearly incapacitated (whew, that was a long word), in desperate need of cookies
Emma: slightly sick, very crabby in medium doses and watching movies
We went to the doctor and it's not strep, or infections (yet) just plain old run of the mill sick with a nasty cold, sore throat, headache, ear aches and cranky. When I called Morgan and gave him the news he was as upset as I was.
Him, "What? They didn't give you any medicine for Emma? No chloroform or anything?"
This was Emma's first Halloween trick-or-treating and it was so much fun. There are lots of kids in our neighborhood and it made for a great family event. I have no idea how Emma managed to climb up all those steps, but she did it. She even learned to say, "Trick or Treat!"
Of course, her "Happy Halloween" sounded more like "Happy Queen" but she said it with such enthusiasm you had to smile. Oh, and she was very polite and said, "Thank you" when she was given candy...after she tried to walk right into everyone's houses as soon as they opened the door.
I think it was temporary insanity. I'd been contemplating cutting Emma's hair for a while because it was looking so scraggly when it wasn't put in pigtails, but yesterday morning it happened. I was trimming my bangs and Emma was sitting on the counter next to me, hair wet, playing with some hairbands. Next thing I knew, I'd made the first cut.
Suddenly I thought, "Oh crap, I've done it and I can't stop now or she'll look really funny."
And when her hair dried it (of course) shrank up and ended up being a bit shorter than I intended. *sigh* I feel like a git but at the same time, the more I see it on her the more I like her new haircut. She's just so darn cute she'd probably look adorable even if you shaved her head. What do y'all think about Miss Emma's new do?
(Sorry for the poor picture but it's so hard to get little one to hold still for more than 3 seconds.)
Fall is one of the few times every year that you can play in the leaves one morning and in the snow the next morning. Saturday was a day of changing weather so Morgan went out to rake leaves and mow before the cold front came in. Emma thought Daddy needed some help so she kindly lent a hand.
The next morning there was snow and Emma has decided she loves snow. I helped her pick a wee pumpkin from the (nearly dead) garden and then Daddy helped her make a snowman just her size. Too cute!! That lucky stiff even got a kiss.
I am sooo bad. I read everyone else's knitting/life/sewing blogs on a daily basis and I get so impatient waiting for them to post again and here I go not blogging for 10 days. tsk tsk tsk
Anyway, we've been busy at least. There was more canning, this time apple butter and flavored applesauces. I must say, they came out very well and I'm pleased with my results but definitely done canning for this year. It's so much prep work and clean up.
Next came the Lil' Devil Hat for Emma's Halloween costume. So cute and so on the mark at times.
I knit the hat in two days but the horns were a bit trickier to figure out the placement of so the project as a whole took me almost a week to finish. Love it!
Also, we had a Pumpkin Party at our house for our meetup.com group. All the wee ones painted pumpkins and I was really surprised at how well Emma did. She held her paintbrush tightly, only painted on the pumpkin, dipped her brush into the colors on the tray and did a lovely job. I'm so proud of her!
And to round out the flurry of activity, my step-mom came to visit. It was so nice to talk with her about my Dad, whom we miss very much and Emma loved seeing her Grandma. It had been a while since we last got together and I was a bit nervous about how Emma would react but she went to Bea like a fish to water. With her she brought some boxes and I now have some old things of his including his wallet, some beer steins he collected from when we lived in Germany and his old military uniform. It's the smallest things that hold the most memories for me and I am glad to have them. His wallet was always with him and I remember seeing it so often that it was like an extension of him to me, this little thing he carried every day of his life. His military uniform is a symbol of his career he was so proud of, and it warms my heart to see it again.
Ok, no sniffing or tearing up. Now look at another cute picture of Emma. Toodles!
Today I had the hankering to cook, probably because I didn't cook at all yesterday. On the menu, Crustless Spinach Quiche and Tomato Basil soup. The quiche I've done before and lately I've been craving tomato basil soup. Not that canned garbage from the store but the real deal. The recipe came from Olive Garden's website a while ago (while trying to find the elusive nutritional breakdown of their dishes) but today it just called to me.
If you try it I recommend substituting chicken broth for the wine (unless you happen to be stock full of dry white wines and you just can't resist cracking one open to make soup) and I used 1% milk instead of the heavy cream. Be warned, this soup is very filling and thick so it doesn't need much more than a salad or small nibble to go with it.
The verdict: Excellent! Go make yourself a batch! :)
As I bask in the glow of finishing another project, I happily have nothing left to show for it. This weekend I got to dying more yarn in some lovely colors and I finished putting the last skein into hanks tonight just before Knit Night. I took all my hand-dyed yarn with me and Patty was so enamored with it she bought my two new skeins and Strawberry Patch on the spot. I was so flattered, she said they looked like Lorna's Laces. *blush*
To date I've now sold 5 skeins of multi-colored yarn and I think I just might keep this up. Who knows, maybe this will be my small source of income to help us out. :) Now wouldn't that be something?
That's right, today my friend and I decided to venture into the wild unknown of home canning. I must say, I think it was a success. So far we have 12, 1 quart jars of home-made apple pie filling. Be warned, most of it is going to be issued as Christmas gifts so remember to feel properly awed and special when you get one...if you should be so lucky. It took about 6 hours of washing, peeling, slicing, stewing and boiling to make these beauties. I even added a "special" ingredient to these that will, shall we say, "Help spread some holiday cheer." Hehehehehehe
Fall is finally here and I'm thrilled. This is my favorite season with sunny, mild days, cool and crisp evenings. This is the season for mulled wine, sweaters, warm stews and a few new distractions this year. First on the list of new things: canning. I've never canned before, but we have an apple tree in our backyard with the yummiest apples...and four boxes of them in our garage! I've decided that apple pie filling and spiced apples will be the fate of most of them and canning is just the ticket. This week I will venture into the wild unknown of home canning. I'll keep you posted!
In the realm of finished projects:
A new jumper for Emma! I love this cute fleece with the Scottie dogs and I bought it before Emma was born to make into a unisex bunting but I never got that far. Thankfully, it's been waiting until now for the perfect project. I lined the top with some spare fabric (love the polka dots!!) and I thought the red buttons were a perfect finish.
An apple pie or two to test bake the apples and try a new recipe. Since I was too lazy to make the top crust I did a cinnamon streusel topping instead. The verdict? Five stars!
Some of you know about my latest endeavors to be a healthier me (physically and mentally), others of you don't. For those of you who have no clue what I'm talking about I'll go through the whole gambit.
The day my daughter was born I weighed in at 213 lbs. Scary, especially considering I am just over 5' 3" tall and was 145 before I was pregnant and 120 when I was still a runner and weightlifter. The bottom line: I gained way too much weight and if I ever wanted to see my body and be proud of it again I had a lot of work to do.
In 2006 my after-pregnancy weight was 185 and I worked hard to take 20 lbs off with a calorie restricted diet and mild exercise. Now comes 2007, 165 lbs, and I had stopped losing weight because your body adjusts to your activity level and caloric intake so I was at a standstill again.
After we finally settled into our new house I decided to take the next step: a gym membership. Starting May 1st I've been at the gym 5 days a week working really hard doing pilates twice a week and cardio workouts three times a week. Funny thing, I've only lost another 5 lbs but I've dropped at least one pant size because I've been trading muscle for fat.
Now I want more, I want my pre-pregnant body back and I want it by Christmas. I have so much hard work ahead of me and once a week I workout with a trainer to help me get there. The biggest secret that will get me there is this: LIFT WEIGHTS!!!
If you've always wanted a healthier you I would strongly encourage you to take a long look at your local weight room and visit a while. The more muscle you have, the more calories your body burns at rest. As a woman, there's an added bonus: lifting weights can significantly reduce a woman's chances of getting osteoporosis. How about another reason? Exercise releases endorphins that are natural mood elevators. Working out is a natural stress reliever, a chance for my daughter to play with other children in the supervised playroom, a means of weight loss, a chance for healthier bones and increased self confidence.
What more could I need? A better diet...and I'll post about that later.
What are you doing to make your life healthier? Give me your suggestions and ideas!!
Today is, you guessed it, my husband's birthday. This year I even remembered it!!
Don't laugh, the first year we were married I was sick and totally spaced it was his birthday. It didn't help that we had just gotten back from our honeymoon and my brain was totally fried. Worse: it took me a while to figure out why I had this nagging feeling of forgetting something. He laughed his butt off when I figured it out...four days later. *sigh* He married a blond, he should have known I make to-do lists and have a detailed calendar for a good reason.
Anyway, this year my husband asked for a party and a party it was. We had friends over, a hot grill and booze. My god, I have never seen so much beer in one place that wasn't a bar. We had five plus cases of beer, mojitos, vodka tonics, rum in several flavors ("Aaarrggh, matey!"), several bottles of wine, Jagermister and more. Holy moly. Looking through the pictures it totally cracks me up that you can spot the "before drinking" shots because, well, everyone has their eyes open and their mouths shut.
Three years ago we took our vows and toasted a life together as husband and wife. Last night Morgan and I went out for dinner to celebrate our third wedding anniversary and many more to come.
Three years ago we were married and six years ago we started dating. Where did the time go? We opened a bottle of champagne and reminisced about the times we've had and all the things we want to do together in a lifetime of marriage. We laughed and kissed and laughed some more.
How lucky I am to be married to my best friend and the best man I know. So, here's to us.
Oh my dears, it's been too long. What have I been up to? Well...
1. I'm working on a Turning Twenty quilt that I hope to piece together this week. It's my fall quilt and I love it so much. Sadly, my craft budget has disappeared for a while so I can't buy batting or backing to finish it just yet. *sniff sniff*
2. I love garagesaleing. This is my most recent and wonderful find. That's right, a Diane Von Furstenburg pattern of her famous wrap dress. The downside: it's for a 43" bust and this pattern predates the multi-size patterns so there is no way in heaven this lovely creation will ever fit me. *sigh* I'm contemplating selling it on e-bay and hoping some beautiful and talented woman will buy it and make it.
3. We went camping and Emma is almost big enough to fit into her size 2 jacket my father bought her forever ago. Doesn't she looks so cute and ready for fall?
4. It came from my garden. It's so big we contemplated tethering it last night so it didn't come for us in our sleep. What? You've never heard of the attack of the killer zucchini?
Today was one of those days that started out overcast and even when the sun came out it was still soggy outdoors. When Emma went down for her nap I went into my sewing room and finished up this cute Frenchy Bag by Amy Butler.
I have to say it was much more involved than any other bag I've made because of the lining and interfacing and pockets, etc. I'm really pleased with the result and I can't wait to start using my new shoulder bag. The fabrics are awesome and I think I might even make a few more in the smaller handbag version for nights out. One in black and white and one with reds in it sounds like it would be awesome. :)
This weekend was wonderful and I really wish our little family had more time together than just two days (and the odd evening hours) per week.
On Friday night a wonderful friend of ours let Emma come play with her kids while the Mr. and I enjoyed a nice dinner out at an Italian restaurant. I can't tell you how much Morgan and I have neglected making time alone together since Emma was born. Lately we've been making a bigger effort at finding the time to enjoy each other's company and it's been so nice. I was lucky enough to marry a wonderful man and being with him makes me warm inside...except for my feet which will always be cold. :)
Saturday was a nice day to get out and go to a reservoir up by Park City but it got old as the morning got warmer and there was no shade. Emma enjoyed riding on her daddy's shoulders and as soon as we got back to the car she passed out. Poor little thing was so tired. Next we drove into Salt Lake City to pick out yarn for Morgan's new sweater and then home again home again.
Sunday found us all going north to visit the new Ikea and holy cow do they have a lot of stuff. I especially loved the children's section for their toys. Emma has become obsessed with Thomas the Train and even prefers him over Elmo, so I was pleased to find these adorable train sets for such a reasonable price. I think we can guess where many of Emma's birthday and Christmas gifts are coming from.
Coming home was even nicer because there were rainbows waiting to greet us. It sounds silly but I haven't seen a rainbow in so long I'd forgotten how beautiful they are. Emma certainly seemed to think they were pretty too based on her "wow!"s.
Monday was a lazy day with errands, ice cream, a drive up to the overlook, a stop at the park and snuggling for movies. Aren't they so cute? I hope you all had a great weekend, too.
I have a new finished project and I'm not sure how I feel about this one.
I did a swatch and tried to modify the pattern to work with the gauge of my beloved Misti Cotton I bought in Cali about a month ago. I had moderate success and it does fit, but not as well as I'd hoped. My mixed feelings probably have something to do with the fact that as soon as I bound off I showed it to my husband and his reaction was, "Eehhhh." As in "it's not bad but not good either" noise men make in lieu of actual verbal communication. I'll let you judge for yourselves. Forgive the casual attire, unwoven in ends and conspicuous shower curtain that are the trademarks of my photography.
Pattern: Matador from KnitScene Yarn: Misti Cotton Mods: Gauge, height and a few mistakes here and there
So, as if you didn't know, Morgan and I went to Alaska on vacation while Emma went to visit Auntie and Co. in Colorado. We flew into Anchorage on Monday night, goofed off around town with Sally visiting, hiking and eating until Friday night. Then we drove down to Seward with Naomi and her brother, Billy. We had a totally awesome time of adult activities, sleeping in, eating great food, sampling the local brews, hiking on mountains, hiking on glaciers, hiking around glaciers, sea kayaking and other such tomfoolery. :)
Now look at lots of pretty pictures and drool.
It rocked! It rocked so much that I think Morgan wants to move to Alaska. We got back home and he says to me, "It's just so hot here." I then do a double take because my beloved is from New Mexico, land of hotness, and it's only 91 degrees at said time. I totally agree that anything above 85 degrees is way too hot but I was shocked. All in all our good times were due in large part to our friends, Sally and Naomi, who went out of their way to show us what awesome people they are and what a cool place they live in. :) Peace!
I have been a busy busy bee this week and this is the last of my projects to show you before my trip...maybe.
My Central Park Hoodie!
And yes, I know I am no good at taking pictures but I do try.
Pattern: Central Park Hoodie from Fall 2006 KnitScene Magazine Yarn: Cascade 220 Heather in Lavender #2422, 7 1/2 skeins Needles: US 6 & 8 Modifications: My gauge was a bit smaller than the pattern's so I knit a size 44" bust but it's closer to 40". I knit the body in one piece and the sleeves in one piece so I wouldn't have to seam them. Excellent! I also made the ribbing on the cuffs only 3" instead of 5" because it just seemed like too long of a cuff. The buttons are iridescent shell buttons and I would have preferred wooden ones but I just didn't find any that struck me. This hoodie is probably going to need a strip of ribbon behind the button holes to stabilize it but I haven't gotten that far and I might never. All in all, a lovely knit that went fairly quickly. This is my first finished adult sweater and I am rather pleased with it. :)