Well, 2 coats of Polycrylic later, and my nightstand is drying. The topcoat part is the most nervewracking, I think. Stain is forgiving. Topcoat, not as much. It's more like painting--with brush marks being the main scary thing. Oh, and bubbles. I had an issue with this. I noticed this especially on the drawer. I tried to remedy it and ended up mussing up the finish...so it will take some sanding and reapplying of the poly to fix that up tomorrow.
CQ in DC's refinish over at Apartment Therapy is reaaaalllly awesome--and a great tip on a product for the future...hint, it doesn't take any stripping! This is the after...I wish I'd nabbed these on Craigslist!