Big Green Egg


photo source:

Okay, okay.. get it out of your system. No really, go ahead, I’ll wait.

“…I do not like them in a house.
I do not like them with a mouse.
I do not like them here or there.
I do not like them anywhere.
I do not like green eggs and ham.
I do not like them, Sam-I-am.”

There. You’ll feel much better now, I promise.

To be honest, that’s all I could think of when I found out about this thing but contrary to the character in Dr. S’s Green Eggs and Ham, I DO like green eggs. Yes. I like them a lot.

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I know it might seem odd to be tossing up a grilling post right as the weather begins to change (for those of you fellow Michiganders you know what I mean…) but I just couldn’t hold it in until next year. So let’s talk BBQ.

A few years back my old man got his hands on a Big Green Egg (BGE) but never really had time to get it up and running. Mostly due to the fact that he personally preferred the convenience of his nice, stainless steel, outdoor-kitchen-style, propane, Kenmore gas grill. It was what he was used to. So he sort of just hung onto it, occasionally offering it to us. Naively, every time, I turned him down.

Meanwhile, Katie and I owned a decent little gas grill that was supposedly stainless steel in one of those “we-say-it’s-stainless-but-really-only-the-handle-is” kind of ways.



(fair warning: if you go the stainless steel grill route, do the magnet test to see what parts are and aren’t stainless. The magnet won’t stick to anything that is 100% stainless)

Needless to say, the grill lasted a good 3 years before rusting out. Literally. And of course it decided to do so right about the time we needed it most – week 1 of the kitchen remodel – #awesome.

Had it been good to us? Sure. Had it been awesome? Far from it.

So began my search for an “awesome” grill.

Somehow all of my searching kept leading me back to the same place –


Just dandy. After turning down my dad on numerous occasions I was now curious.

So I talked to him about firing it up and taking it for a test drive. 1 week later we were transporting it to our house, setting it up, and I haven’t looked back. (THANKS DAD!)

Getting it to the house was a bit of a task but we got it there…


I found it. This thing is the ultimate grill.

Our first cookout was this past labor day. We had a few of our close friends over to celebrate the end of all of our kitchen labor and everything turned out perfectly (except for this picture – apparently I was too way too focused on the food).

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Now we’ve been using it several times a week. It even get’s hot enough to do fire grilled pizza.

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And the best part? It is self insulating, making cooking throughout the winter a breeze (pun not intended) (but I am proud of it).

We’ll get into more of the details of this thing as time goes on. Just thought this was a nice break from all the kitchen posting you’ve been putting up with.

What is your weapon of choice when it comes to grills? Do you enjoy grilling? Have you ever tried the Big Green Egg or anything like it? Are you a traditional, coals, kind of person or more of a propane pro? Would love to hear your feedback.

Our New Kitchen

First of all, thank you to everyone who has diligently followed our kitchen remodel journey. We appreciate the feedback, tips, suggestions, and overall response we’ve had.

Fair warning: if you’ve followed the whole journey you may have seen a bunch of these pics but bear with us. The reveal is coming. But let’s take a step back and see how far we’ve come.

When we first visited the house, before it was actually ours, the kitchen looked a bit like this:  Read More

Finishing Touch(es)

Okay, so we’ve been making progress. Lights are hung, floors have been laid, toe-kick moldings installed. Now all that’s left to do is… a lot. All of the finishing touches.

Katie and I realized pretty quickly that we work really well under pressure. So we set a goal for ourselves by sending out an invite to several friends to come on over and enjoy a Labor Day BBQ at our place. We thought this would be perfect! It would kick us into high gear and would be our big kitchen reveal.

Then, Friday evening it dawned on me just how much we had to do before Monday’s fast approaching shin-dig.


Alright, not looking too bad, right? I mean, it’s come a long way since this:

Kitchen Before

But we still had a ton of work to do to check the box off on the kitchen. Here was our impending list of to-dos that I dreaded looking at every day:

  • Install crown molding
  • Install upper cabinet base molding
  • Install window frames
  • Install backsplash (YIKKKKKES!)
  • Grout
  • Lay base molding around kitchen
  • Caulk
  • Plug in range hood

This is when I began thinking our “kitchen reveal” idea was a bit ludicrous. Oh, and speaking of Luda… all the tile work you’re about to read about made my arms feel like they should have been looking like this… but they don’t.

So we hit the list. Each item one by one. I somehow decided to start with the most difficult – bika-wika-backsplash.

This was my first time doing any sort of tile work so I did quite a bit of research before hand. One product that kept coming up as having phenomenal reviews was SimpleMat.


Let me tell you right now, this product is freaking awesome. All we had to do was cut the sizes and strips we needed…


…place them on the wall and press them on with a grout float tool to make sure they adhered to the wall.

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Then you peel the fronts off one section at a time and stick your tiles on.


Sure it took awhile. About 8 hours total but in one day (Friday) I had all of the tile up on the wall.


Next step was grouting.

We bought this warm grey grout from Lowes and mixed it with the grout booster solution so that we wouldn’t need to seal it after the fact.


Mixed it for about 5 minutes and began applying. Give or take an hour later and we were in pretty dern good shape. Katie and I weren’t able to get a ‘during grouting’ pic due to the fact that our hands were literally covered in grout. But here’s a look a the finished product to the left of the range. Oh yeah. and if you notice I’m knocking that last item off the list right now too. Caulk!


The other finishing touches are a bit less interesting but lets just say I installed the cabinet above the fridge (which sucked but was nothing really to post about) so stay tuned for the next post which will be the big reveal with good-ol-fashinoed before and after pictures and all that jazz! Hope you guys have enjoyed the journey and adventure thus far. I can tell you that we’ve hated loved it!

Ah! So excited to have a finished first floor of our house for fall! PS – have a mentioned that fall is the start of the Christmas season in the Donnelly household? So pumped.