OK, here's the latest scoop. I guess we really did win the contest! Shad and company came to the house, took pictures, measured the territory, and told us it was actually possible to improve upon our kitchen. Like Shad mentioned before, there are all kinds of possibilities. Shad prepared a few plans for our review. We added other suggestions from family and friends, and then tried to come up with our own best plan. In the end, we really couldn't improve that much on Shad's. So, we're just trying to "tweek" things to fit our own ideosyncracies. It's mostly been just a planning process so far. That's good. We prefer that approach--no designer, contractor, or other menacing surprizes out there. The Portrait Kitchen folks have all been pleasant, patient, and totally professional. We're optimistic about how things are going, although there's still a lot of planning and preparation to do. Up to this point I can tell you--it's great having a professional kitchen designer! I wince at the thought of trying to do this alone.