To be fair, we were never really without light. We just had incredibly ugly light fixtures. See? {Cute, handy husband...not so cute light fixture.}

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As you may remember from my posts here and here, we've been working on some fixes to bring our kitchen into the year 2012. We DIYed painting our cabinets, which was a ton of work. When it came to electrical work, we decided to go with the pros. After asking for recommendations from Facebook friends and Twitter followers, we ended up going with Shields Electric.

They were amazing. I met briefly with owner Jeff Shields and he worked up a really fair quote. He also offered lighting design advice. We got four quotes and none of the other guys really did that. They asked me what I wanted and didn't go much further to offer suggestions.

I'm not a lighting designer, so I really appreciated when Jeff offered up a solution based on the size of our kitchen, the natural light we have streaming into the space and the fact that under-counter task lighting just isn't in the cards right now. He also went over product options. He recommended recessed LED can lights, which will save energy, money and waste in the long run. Can't beat that.

So, the morning of the lighting installation, Jeff and his crew came out and got to work. They removed the outdated box light (yippee!) and loaded it in the truck to be donated.

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Then they measured twice, cut once and installed the can lights. I'm not kidding you, it took a few hours and they were done.

Once the lights were installed, Steve from Steve's Drywall Service came in and filled the holes in the ceiling. He matched the texture really well too. We could have probably patched it ourselves, but I've actually tried to match texture before. Let's just say it didn't quite turn out.

Thanks to Steve, you can barely tell we had patch work done!

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We had to wait for about 24 hours before we painted the ceiling, but that was okay. We had paint in the garage left by the previous owners, so that part wouldn't take any time at all. Easy peasy.

Or so I thought.

Turns out we didn't have left over ceiling paint. And I didn't think to ask Jeff and crew to save us a bit of ceiling they had cut out for the recessed can lights. Ugh.

Have you ever tried to match paint? What about white paint? Yeah. There are about a million different shades of white paint available at the hardware store.

After a lot of trial and error, (and some serious help from the color specialist at Lowe's) I finally found a match. Whew!

When it came time to choose and install our pendant light over the sink, we went with this option from Lofings Lighting here in Sacramento. When we got it home and opened the box, we noticed that the wires were silver (not black, white and ground like the wiring Jeff and crew had installed):

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Sadly, the directions were not in the box as the sticker promised. So, after a few google searches and a quick email to Jeff, we were ready to go.

And go, we did. Just look at this hot piece of glass:

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The best part? It's centered over the sink. We still need curtains and that wreath may be moved, but hey...I've achieved symmetry in my kitchen, so I'm all smiles.

Can we do a little before and after action? Let's take it way back to October of last year:

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And now:

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Needless to say we are thrilled with how it all turned out. We got in some solid DIY action, but happily called in the professionals when we didn't feel 100% comfortable doing certain things on our own.

For my Sacramento friends: 

If you're looking for a quote on electrical work, reach out to Shields Electric here, here or here. You'll be glad you did.

If you're looking for someone to do drywall or patch work, I'd recommend Steve Harris from Steve's Drywall service to anyone. You can call him at (916) 369-7168.

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Anyone else working on home projects this summer? Be sure to share! Just link up in the comment section.

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