Monday, April 20, 2015

onward, kitchen soldiers! {buzz lightrail... to the rescue!}

Do you remember where we left off?  Because I sure don't...

Oh yes.  Skin tags, crown moulding, and unfortunate squash. Silly me.

I love the look of a wall cabinet that is finished on the bottom with some kind of moulding, whether it's functional (light rail) or not.  Once Philly realized I didn't make this concept up to torture him, he was fully on board.

The cabinets in our old house weren't "finished out" on the bottom, but they were very light cabinets and the cabinet boxes were also light.  So the unfinished business didn't really scream at you even if you turned your head and looked under the cabinets' skirts.

kitchen in our old house

Our new cabinets are a dark cherry, and the cabinet boxes are a light birch, so it's VERY noticeable when you peer up underneath these cabinets' skirts, which happens when you're sitting down.  Anywhere.

Well, not in the bathroom.  Or in the car.  Oh, never mind.

The most obvious of the unfinished business:

Under-cabinet lighting was one of my 10 commandments written in dog snacks and later destroyed by Eddie.  It happens.

We don't have a window in the actual kitchen area, and with the dark cabinets, you sometimes need a spelunking cap to make your way through.

Under-cabinet lighting would be the difference between Eddie getting his canned spaghettios and Phil getting his canned dog food.  Strike that.  Reverse it.  Thank you.

I wanted to hang disco balls under the cabinets but Phil put his foot down.  And his finger in the air.

Philly put his disco balls away and did some research.  He came up with some great LED lighting by Go LED Lite.  I hate to admit it, but in the long run, this was far more practical.


Back to work.  He installed the cherry veneer panel to finish the space above the sink and attached the extrusions that hold the light strips.  He also ran the wiring and attached the LED strips beneath all the other cabinetry.

Buzz, Buzz....

Part of this project was also finishing out the microwave cabinet:

 More cherry veneered panels:


Remember what the cabinet tushies looked like before Buzz Lightrail?

And the finished product:

Oh, and we totally installed Buzz upside-down.  But that was completely intentional and way more fun.

Buzz is looking pretty awesome, wouldn't you say?

And Philly is such a good sport.  Even after that Saturday Night Fever picture I made of him, I'm still comfortable in the fact he's not secretly plotting my demise.

I think.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

pizza nirvana {the sloppy chef series}

Greetings, old friends and new!

Firstly, I was going to combine the title of this post and call it "pirvana," but you may have then expected a documentary on depraved, flesh-eating fish.  While this would be quite exciting, I don't currently have data on this subject.

I haven't posted about food in a very long time.  This is due to the fact I mostly eat everything before my food has a chance to pose for my Nikon point-and-shoot.

You may recall my pizze! post from a gentler, pre-home-building time.  I still love that recipe, but I am constantly searching to better myself, further grow my butt (not growths ON my butt, to be clear), and finally reach that state of Pizza Bliss.

My endeavoring to persevere, I believe my quest is very, very close to an end.  A somewhat large end.

I can't claim this recipe to be my own, but I would if I thought I could get away with it.  I will give credit where credit is due.  I did, however, manage to shove my camera between my mouth and the pizza and took some of my own pictures, just to prove I'd actually constructed it with my own two chubby paws.

Here is the amazing recipe I followed to the letter (okay, it's not the recipe, it's a link to the folks know how this works):


I have not yet investigated this technique on other sites, but this one worked GREAT!

The crust crux of the technique is to place the dough and toppings in a COLD cast-iron skillet, then put it on your stovetop and crank your burner up to HIGH for several minutes, then put it in your 450 preheated oven to finish the job.

Simply amazing.  The crust was crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside.  Just as Sausageaus, the pizza god, intended.

Please go check out Nick's site for the amazing how-to.  It was SO easy and totally worth it!!

In the meantime, feast your eyes on pictures only someone with amazingly no photographic talent can provide:

Enter the dough (aka butt-enlarger):

The sauce (I followed his recipe, except I added my fresh basil to the cooled sauce instead of on top of the pizza after it came out of the oven...but I think it needs a pinch of sugar):

 Toppings (some more gag-worthy than others):

Cheese (I was pretty certain you couldn't figure that out yourself):

I love my 36" gas cooktop (and I'm an excellent photographer.  Not):

In the oven:

In the meantime:

You pirvanas.  It's about puppies.  I know what you were thinking.

Speaking of puppies, Eddie is resting comfortably in his dogloo:

 Oh thank God it's finally time to eat:

Seriously, this pizza was amazing, and I encourage you to try it out!  If you don't have a cast-iron skillet, GET ONE...they're superb.

Philly is currently looking for additional cast-iron pans so we can have you all over for dinner.

Oh, and I shaved his head completely bald this morning.  It was soooo cool!!!!

Now go.  And eat pizza.


Tuesday, March 31, 2015

onward, kitchen soldiers! {crown royal!}

So I discovered a skin tag on the underside of my right boob this morning.  What is the meaning of this?  What is the purpose of this useless cruelty?

Why am I talking about my boob?

This next part of the kitchen reveal makes me want to sing!  Which is very bad for anyone who is not suffering serious hearing loss.

First, the gratuitous booze shot:

I really like this sexy's quite risque.  Almost looks like she's showing off her tag-free right boob.  Bitch.

Is there a point to this post?

Oh moulding!  Isn't it pretty?

Hahaha...that's just blocking, but I really had you going, didn't I?

Next came the trim pieces:

I swear I don't know why my countertops look like poop brown.  They're not.

Philly used the Kreg Crown Pro for all the crown pieces.  I was so embarrassed on my last Kitchen Soldiers! post.  I originally spelled it "Craig" instead of "Kreg."  I'm the queen of proofing and I have no idea how I managed to do that.  I hang my head in shame.

A singular piece of crown moulding! 

Is it "molding" or "moulding"?  I like "moulding."  It makes me feel British.

And intelligent.  

Whoa.  British Intelligence.

Do you see my Pot Farm pokin' out?

I'm so sorry I'm the worst photo-blogger ever.  I'm pretty sure that's Robert Irvine on my TV.  And a random piece of butter on my cutting board.

Remember my Power Range Hood and Pot Filler?

Here's your bonus for the day.  See those holes in the tiles?  Those have real purpose.

I failed to get a good picture of this, but Philly used lag bolts as anchors for the shelves so they would "float."

Then he drilled holes through the side cabinets and attached screws to hold everything in place.

It's just like magic:

Seriously, no one will eat me:

Things always look messier in pictures than in real life.

I'm quite sure the shelves will go through several personality changes before they get themselves right.

My favorite thing is my diner-style clock from Tar-jay.

I'm going to have to buy myself roses every week.  Damn the bad luck.

So...before crown and shelves:

And after:

If you missed part one of Kitchen Soldiers! you can find it HERE.

If you missed part two of Kitchen Soldiers! you can find it HERE.

If you missed part three of Kitchen Soldiers! you can find it HERE

Coming up on Kitchen Soldiers!  Buzz LightRail to the Rescue!

Stay tuned...