Thank you all so much for all of the advice and support and feedback as I worked my way through the Great Ripping Adventure of '09.
As much as I was curious to see the outcome of the knitting needle size experiment, I decided that I was more concerned about the effect of repeated ripping and reknitting on my yarn, and ended up just dropping those twenty stitches on the other side and knitting them up to match the first side. The job was neater the second time around, which makes sense, since I knew what I was doing and where to do it. I ended up doing a quick steam blocking yesterday, by putting a wet towel over the sweater and running over that with a hot iron; I then stretched and fiddled the damp and warm stitches into better order. There may be a bit more fiddling needed with a needle to redistribute extra yarn over neighboring stitches before I'm all done, but I'm fairly happy with the results.
I don't know how well you can see the shaping there; I'm reduced to using PhotoBooth until we get a new memory card for the camera, but the fact that it's not too visible, is, I think, a sign of success.
I bound the shoulders off together this morning (three-needle bind-off), and put it on. I think it's going to be all right; the shaping isn't too out of hand, the length is about right (it'll get a bit longer in the blocking, which is fine), and it's got the loose fit I wanted, since I'm planning to wear this over another layer.
Not too bad, no?
That leaves me with just the sleeves and the neckline to finish. The plan at this point is to pick up stitches for the sleeves, use short-rows to shape the sleeve caps, and knit down. That will mean grafting the twisted edging on, as I'll have to do with the v-neck; good thing I like kitchenering things. I'll cast on for the first sleeve after I hit "post", and with luck, I will have this finished by the weekend.
Today will be a quieter day than I'd originally planned. Older Daughter has been feeling crummy the last couple of days, but pushed through to finish her History Day Project (all by herself, no thanks to the "partner" she was assigned, grr...). This morning as I was driving her to school, she decided that her stomach was feeling far too queasy to make it through the day; it's entirely unlike her (she almost never misses school -- maybe one day a year, two at most), so we dropped off her project and I brought her home. She's on the couch now, drinking mint tea, and I'm guessing she'll be napping before long. I've cancelled the couple of things that were on my list, and will hang out with her today. Tomorrow is similarly quiet, hence my high hopes for finishing.
However, don't expect this knitting productivity to go on much longer. Next week, I'm back to work in earnest; this semester is devoted purely to research (no classes), so my schedule is much more flexible than usual, but there's a lot I need to get done in the next three months. I'm excited to have the time to really dig into writing; I haven't been able to do that since the year I wrote my dissertation (while, incidentally, also gestating Older Daughter), and there are times that I worry I've lost the ability to really focus. But I'm hoping that's not true -- it's just that opportunities to do so are as rare as hen's teeth. Meanwhile, though, I'm enjoying my last few days of freedom.