I manually pressed down all of the concrete before and after the rebar was installed. Nephew carefully screed the surface to make it level, then troweled it to make it smooth.
One of the things that we forgot to do in our rush the day before was to vibrate the forms after the concrete was poured. Vibrating the forms makes the air bubbles rise to the top. In the tutorials that I read and watched, they all suggested running an orbital sander along the sides of the form. Because we were so calm, cool, and collected, we remembered this step.
I wasn't convinced that just running it along the edge would be enough, so I also vibrated the bottom of the form. It does work. We could see the bubbles rising to the surface and popping.
This is our first test slab, dried. Eek!
And this is our second test slab, still wet.
I sprinkled my three colors of extra fine glitter on the surface. Then did another marbling test.
I think it turned out pretty good.
I diluted the charcoal concrete tint with water and while the concrete was still quite wet, I painted it on with a chicken feather.
I don't know how far the tint will soak into the surface. I expect it won't sink in far enough and when we sand it, the marbling will be sanded off. But, I have a back-up plan that I will try after the sanding. I also have a feeling that the glitter will sand off, but when we pour our kitchen slab, I will add the glitter to the cement as we're pouring it. That way, it will be mixed in and will be deeper than just the surface.