I cleaned out all the oil in the little crevaces around the spark plug housings... seems i had a lot of spilled oil down there and i didn't know it... i ended up using a clear brake-bleeding tube (or a clear straw works just as well) and stuffed a bit of a paper towel in the end of it (about 1/2") in order to "suck" it out... made things a lot easier and quicker instead of trying to cram a rag or whatever down there.
I still get the burnt smell in the morning, but i think eventually it will go away after the last of the oil residue gets burnt away. I cleaned all around the head gasket and no leaks (after running the car around town for 30 minutes) so that's a good sign. I ordered a new cabin filter too as mine is all blacked from when my car overheated and sprayed coolant everywhere.
WTB: 3 Stage Intake Manifold and components - PM me your asking price.