Monday, February 16, 2015

February 2015

The house is framed. The new roof is nearly finished. The interior is framed. I am beginning to see what our new house will look like. We have designed our kitchen, picked counter-tops, flooring, windows and lights. We still have a lot of picking out to do but we are getting into the swing of it.
The kids are getting used to spending their weekends in tile or home design stores.

Ringing in 2015

A couple of storms put the concrete on hold until the middle of January, the ground has to be completely dry to pour concrete. Stephen and I were beginning to get dis-heartened seeing our lovely little house demo'ed and no progress being made. But the crew were great and re-assured us that as soon as we had foundations, the framing and new roof would be built quickly.

Brian loved the concrete pouring - there were two big concrete trucks outside the house, a long hose that ran to the back yard and a remote control to pour the concrete. Very exciting stuff!

December 2014

December was spent demolishing enough of the house so that we could pour the concrete for the addition. The Philp family did our part :)

The kitchen - before and after

 No going back now!

Thursday, December 04, 2014

Novemeber 2014 - the plan

It all started in January 2014 - we interviewed a couple of contractors with a view to adding a bathroom. They recommended architects and we hired Pete Moyer to draw up our plans.
Most of the contractors suggested that adding an additional bedroom along with the bathroom would not add that much cost so we decided to add a master suite. Stephen also really wanted better access to the back yard, so "bringing the outside in" was also added to the list. So that meant the bathroom had to moved, along with the living room to give us better access to the back garden.
By the time we settled on plans, it was May and they looked like this.

We spent the summer tweaking the plans, getting a structural engineer to add the structural component and by September our plans were in 'plan check' at the city.

November 2014 - Our house remodel begins

After 10 months of planning we finally got our building permit to start our remodel. What started as needing an extra bathroom has morphed into a 500 sq ft addition plus 300 sq ft interior remodel. Our new house is going to be fabulous - we just need to get going!
Here I am with our building permit outside City Planning offices in Redondo Beach. Getting a permit was a bit of an eye-opener. First of all, all cities are different, so in Redondo Beach, you need three permits: Mechanical, Electrical and Building (i think!)
Then, there is a list of items on each that you have to pay for. Even if you already own it and are just moving it to a different location. So, for example, I had to pay $10 each for my washer and dryer that I already own!! Just cause the laundry room is moving a couple of feet. And you have to pay for each electrical outlet, switch and light. It's a bit of a racket, if you ask me, but I am so happy to be finally at this point that I just write the check and move on.

Monday, March 19, 2012

March 2012

Brian turned 2 this month. He has started saying sentences like 'I do it' and is very polite saying please and thank-you at all the right times. You can ask him to put something in the trash - he loves doing that. He reacts to good things by saying Oooooh ... and reacts to frustration or annoyance by throwing things or screaming. He loved his birthday and made a good attempt at blowing out his candle. He was delighted when his friend turned up for his party and showed him all around his room. The best was playing with him out in the back garden - being pulled around on the boogie-board by Stephen.
Cliona found Brian's birthday hard - she was aware of all the attention on Brian and complained a little about that. But she had Avery and Kat to play with over Brian's birthday weekend which made it easier to handle.
Cliona had a great ski season - she has been to the top of both Snow Summit and Bear Mountain. Her favorite this year were the rollers on Bear Mountain. She would do that run over and over again - she even caught a little air once or twice!


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Brian and Cliona starting off 2012

It has been a long time since I updated the blog and I think the main reason is becasue everyone is on facebook these days and so a lot of my pictures get posted there. In saying that, it's nice to also have a written story for Cliona and Brian to look back on in years to come so here's the latest and greatest from the Philp household.
Clio and I hit the slopes a couple of weeks ago. She loved the racing me down the bunny hill and taking the magic carpet back up. She got a little ruffled on Summit run so we called it a day after that but she did not lose her mojo and is eager to get back on the slopes - hurray!

She is also getting really good at Irish dancing. She has been moved up a class and is delighted with herself. She is constantly jigging around the house and has a few good friends so I am hoping that this will stick for a while. I admit, I love bringing her and listening to the trad music every week. At home Cliona loves her screen time and the program of the month is Danny the Phantom Ghost. She is a super duper big sister - so loving and patient with Brian. It is a joy to see them together - she also likes sneak up into her bed (where Brian can't get) to play on her DS but I think her top game is still pretend play - making up stories. Herself and Stephen have a great time making up stories while she is having a shower or walking to school. I must record one soon.
Everything in school is also going well. She has lots of friends including Cassidy, Madison and Shreya. Cliona, Madison and Shreya are crazy about a sleep-over right now. They are always talking about it and just yesterday she came home with a long list of things to do on a sleepover - funny stuff!

And how about little man? Brian is train, plane and truck crazy. Loves them, loves them all. We took a trip on the metro on New Years Day and he loved it. He always stops and points and says plane when one flies overhead. Trash day is his favorite! He can talk a lot more now and is taking a lot more interest in books. Truck books are his favorite (surprise, surprise!) followed by anything pop-up, nursery rhymes and Dr Seuss. He'll sing along to row, row, row your boat and Old MacDonald. He loves being chased around the house - he laughs hysterically. He also likes to be turned upside down, jumping on the bed, being tickled (Cliona is very fond of our tickle fights too). He'll give you a kiss and hug on demand - and he's also started to just give hugs without being asked. They are the best! Love the baby - what can I say ? It's a wonderful age!

Thursday, September 08, 2011

Ireland in August

Cliona, Brian and I had a wonderful time in Ireland. We started it all off with a trip to West Cork to visit Cliona's Wave. Cliona was an immortal princess who fell in love with an Irishman but when they ran away together to Ireland, her father sent a wave to pick her up off the shoreline in Glandore, West Cork and bring her back to the Land of Eternal Promise. We stayed in a lovely cottage just outside Skibbereen. Mam, Dad, Eoghan and Aneta joined us on our adventure and we had a lovely few days exploring West Cork. One of the highlights was our trip to Sherkin Island, just 10 mins from the mainland with a popluation of just over 100. We walked 1 1/2 miles through quiet country roads to a lovely cove called Sliver strand. It was the perfect place for our picnic lunch and Cliona and Brian had a great time paddling.
Back in Dublin some of the highlights included a Viking Tour , a trip to the Leprechaun Museum , a fishing trip with Eoghan and Aneta and Kevin's 80th Birthday. The best part was just being home, back in the banter, seeing family and friends, everyone together havin' a laugh. Good times!!

Of course the trip was well documented (thanks Dad!!) and some of the pics are HERE

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Summer Holidays

The end of the school year was pretty fun for Cliona. She received an award from the school principal for being a 'good citizen'. Her teacher nominated her because she was being especially kind to her friends and was being extra helpful around the classroom. What a great girl! I couldn't be more proud knowing she goes the extra mile at school.
The school had an open house where we went to her classroom to see all the work she had done throughout the year. There was also a dance performance and music recital to attend and then before you knew it, school was over and we were off on our first Philp family vacation.

We took Tay & Ann's RV up to Sequoia National park for a few days and had the best wildlife encounters of our lives. We saw a bear almost as soon as we drove into the park. The next day we saw a Mama bear and her two cubs on our waterfall hike. And then the following day we saw another bear in a meadow near a sequoia grove. It was amazing seeing these Black bears in the wild - they were not interested in us at all - they were too busy foraging for food. The cubs were the best - we saw them climb up and play in pine trees.


Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Cliona turns 6

Come with us to Neverland on a Peter Pan adventure. The back garden was transformed into Neverland and all Cliona's family and friends dressed up as their favorite Peter Pan characters. Cliona was Wendy, Avery was the crocodile and Kat was a mermaid. Captain Hook (Stephen) led his band of pirates (Dad, Gk, Kerry and I) while Tiger Lily (Dana) and her Indian tribe (Dave and Brian) painted faces in the tee-pee. Mam was Mrs Darling, looking after us all!

Another highlight was Cliona getting her American girl doll. She had been to the store (that is completely dedicated to these dolls and their accessories) on a field trip last August and had been asking for a doll ever since. So Mam,Dad and I brought her to the store so she could pick out her very own doll for her birthday. It was a great treat - she picked the American Indian doll Kaya.

Mam and Dad got Cliona a horse-riding lesson for her birthday so we all went off to the stables to watch Clio ride Miss K K. The stables were lovely and Cliona had a blast grooming and riding her pony. Of course, the whole afternoon is well documented with pictures :)

In May, we all headed up to San Francisco to watch Stephen run the Bay to Breakers race with a bunch of friends. We had a fantastic time with Chris and Kathy - little Parker and Clio got along so well and Brian was great on the long trip . We managed a trip to Cal Academy as well as a visit to John and Meridith to see their new baby, Lila.
All our pictures are HERE