First of all, a scarf knitted entirely in the stockinette stitch is not a good idea - unless it is knitted in the round like a tube - because it seriously curls on the sides! I made that green and red scarf for my daughter and even blocking it didn't help keep it straight! However, all is not lost because I think I can sew some fleece to the back of it and that may straighten it out. Besides, it was a practice scarf (with a few oopsies) and done in 100% acrylic so I wasn't expecting any awards on that one!
Knowing how to purl and knit has allowed me to experiment with different patterns like the rib stitch and my latest favorite: the basket weave! I am currently working on a scarf for me that is turning out quite beautiful if I do say so myself.
Another thing I have learned is that I am a bit of a yarn snob. I have tons of yarn that I bought from Wal-Mart that is great for practicing on or making a quick scarf for me. But I LOVE to work with 100% merino wool when making gifts. It is so soft and the natural fibers are more pleasant to knit with. The downside is that it is more expensive, you have to hand wash it, and there is less on a skein so you have to buy more. But I still think it is worth it!
What am I going to work on next? The possibilities are endless! I think I would like to learn how to knit socks. Or create my own Fair Isle pattern .. Or a soft blanket ... Or a toasty beret .... Or a cable knit sweater ................