Search the board using ctrl-f to find 1.) "a story", and 2. "Laminate Countertops"
A professional will do your project in a day or two, and you will get professional results.
With that said, I have two things to say about John's directions.
1. I prefer two layers of underlayment, because otherwise the selfedge hangs down so low you might not be able to open your cabinets or drawers. (Trust me, you want to learn this one from someone else, not first hand)
2. Screw the underlayment to the cabinets BEFORE you install the top. It is much better to fix a punch through on bare wood than to freak out punching through your beautiful formica.
Besides, it is much easier to work the formica top if it is stationary and magically at waist level, and once you have finished making it look great, you don't run the risk of damaging it by moving it around.
Last item, if the countertop is longer than 8' or wider than 4', overlap your seams on the double layer of plywood, or you will have a whole different problem to deal with...
Have fun and good luck,
Try to take a free class at home depot or something first, and do buy the time life books and the router.
(Gee, are you REALLY saving any money on this one?)