Blog Archives for category Raves & Praise
This is a combined post with four days of waiting and replies.
The next day they replied that they had found them and emailed them all to me free of charge. Except they were all of Katie! (Looking on the bright side, I now had like eight free photos of Katie instead of paying $5 a piece.) Soooo I emailed back and asked about them again, saying I hated to be such a pain about this but this was my bucket list experience and I had really wanted the photo. They replied with links to pictures…but they were the same photos of Katie they had already sent! So I fired off another email thanking them for all the pictures but explaining AGAIN that they were not pictures of ME.
Two days go by with no response so I email them again, casually asking if there was any update.
TWO DAYS LATER I get an email apologizing for the delayed response (she had been off work) and saying “Unfortunately I was unable to find your photos, but we would be happy to send you a voucher for you to come back and fly for free so that we may find your photos.”
I receive the email voucher for two free flights.
And then I proceeded to write this strongly-worded feedback for their survey—which I also emailed to their corporate office.
Our instructor was awesome and we all had an amazing time and I was thrilled to check something off my bucket list. I do, however, have two HUGE suggestions (I will also be writing corporate as I believe it would be beneficial company-wide).
One, kids under a certain age should be required to do a practice run on the bench in the classroom to get the feel of it. While there isn’t much to remember, even I (as a 42yo) kind of forgot everything the first moment I stepped into the chamber. So you can imagine what happens to an 8yo and 4yo! They did well and had fun, but my son had spaghetti legs one whole flight and the instructor spent an inordinate amount of time wrangling him. I think had he practiced on the table first, he may have had a better idea on what to do.
Two, guests with long hair should be strongly recommended or even required to have their hair braided, in a cap, or at the very least tucked up inside their helmet. You could even provide a cap (like you provide earplugs). I have long hair (to the middle of my back). I did ask the best way to deal with it and was briefly told a braid or a low ponytail. So I opted for the easy solution of a low ponytail. BIG MISTAKE. I didn’t realize until after we were done that my hair was a huge knotted mess. When I tried to deal with it the following morning, it was a nightmare trying to get 8″ of thick hair untangled. Granted I should have thought more about it and realized that wind was obviously going to mess up my hair and taken my own precautions—but with the excitement of the day and having asked and received a quick answer, I thought I’d be okay. I literally spent HOURS painstakingly trying to comb out all the mats and knots with a head full of conditioner, leave-in conditioner, detangling spray, coconut oil, olive oil, etc.—anything to help the process along. And eventually just gave up and used brute force and pulled out a ton of hair. This was a very disappointing end to an awesome experience which I believe could all have been easily prevented with a simple cap, helmet tuck, or requirement to braid.
Lastly, we had an issue with our videos and photos that we’re still trying to work out. We were a family of four and when we went to check out our media, my name was listed but the media was of my daughter (whose name wasn’t listed). A call to your staff had them researching the footage and I did eventually get my videos, but am still waiting to see if they can find my photos. I know mistakes happen but I have to say it was upsetting to realize I initially didn’t have any videos or pictures of my bucket list experience. I will say, though, that dealing with your staff regarding this has ended up better than I’d expected—emails were answered quickly and my issues thus far were solved efficiently. I am hoping to resolve the photo issue quickly as well. (I am wondering if there isn’t some way to scan your wrist band before each time you step in the chamber, which would trigger the recording with your name. It would seem you have some similar type system since the videos were mostly attached to the correct person…but then I’m not sure how my flights were all missing.)
All that said, I will say that overall we were very happy with our experience…and we will be back. But I would strongly suggest adding both the child-practice sessions and the long-hair issue to your pre-flight information and lessons.
So, while there were some bad parts (the hair thing and the missing media thing), overall I would still recommend it…plus I get two extra flights during which my hair will be tucked so far up in my helmet it won’t budge. And I will have Tom taking pictures and videos the whole time.
So we get home and I pretty much went straight to the computer to check out our photos and videos. If you recall, our iFly tickets each came with a free video and then Tom and I added on the High Flyer experience which came with a photo. So I login to get our videos and pictures…and guess what? There are exactly ZERO of either for me. Everyone else has a video (or two). Everyone else has a bunch of pics (Katie and Owen each had like 15). I HAD ZERO OF EITHER. The way their site is set you click on your location > date > flight time > name to see your associated media. Except Katie’s name wasn’t listed and my name showed all of Katie’s photos and videos! I flew right before her so had no idea how they could possibly have skipped me…twice? Including a high fly experience AND a double-length flight?!
I called them immediately and told them what was going on and they said they’d have to look into it and call me back. It didn’t sound terribly promising. They did call back within about 15 minutes to ask what color shoes I was wearing—I’m assuming so they could scrutinize the video feed and try and find my media. So I was a bit upset…but in a holding pattern hoping they would come through.
And what really gets me is that I didn’t take (or have Tom take) one single picture or video with my phone!! Why not you ask? Because I was thinking I didn’t want to keep it in my pocket while I was flying…but DUH I could have easily handed it off to Tom because we obviously weren’t flying at the same time. I was so pissed at myself about that for quite some time.
When we hadn’t heard anything back from them, Tom called to see what was going on. They assured him they were taking care of it.
I checked my email before bed and discovered they had sent the download links for two videos (so I actually got a free video!) but…they didn’t send any pics (!!) so I had to email them back about that. And after watching the videos…it’s two snippets from one flight and not a video from both flights! (Believe me, I’m very happy to have gotten the videos at all, but I am still very much hoping there’s a picture or two since they are much clearer than the video.)
After all these years I finally have the perfect outfit to wear with my Grandma Smith’s purple pearls. She loved her costume jewelry…
The weather was so awesome that we ate dinner outside and then just hung out. Tom rarely posts on Facebook so you know something was seriously good if he does…
Had a great Spring day. Took the kids out Pokémon hunting in the morning. Wood working followed by little league practice (pitching to an awesome group of kids), grilling flank steak and drinking really good beer on the deck and watching my wonderful kids play together and read bed time stories.
Truly I do not know if life can get any better. Life is great!
Owen was reading to us (getting his daily reading homework done!) and then it got dark so he was reading by iPhone light. The two books he picked to read to Katie were Hooray for Diffendoofer Day (Seuss) and The History of the American Flag.
Goofing around together:
I was hosting an online Facebook party for this cool new lipstick and had included people from all times of my life…and the consultant was posting fun games for them to earn raffle entries. This one she did was so sweet and the responses made me happy cry. I’m posting it so I can look back on it when I’m having a bad day.
Owen’s school participated in the Boosterthon Fun Run again this year and once again Owen ran all 35 possible laps! The weather was unseasonably cold (with the first snow day and two 2-hour delays this very week!) so the run had to move inside. They turned it into a “glow run” which was cool…but made for a horrible time taking pictures.
But first, as we were waiting to enter the gym (each grade level ran at a different time), Owen came by doing his weekly chore: delivering lunch boxes to the cafeteria! As soon as he saw me, he hid behind the door (as seen in the second photo). What a stink!
Each classroom was announced and took a lap around the course and then lined up.
Staff ready to mark each lap!
Katie ready to make some noise and cheer!
The boys’ cheering section.
Getting ready to run!
This year they just got a sticker on their shirt instead of writing on the shirt itself. Owen actually ran more than the 35 laps, but a lot of kids did—the laps were much shorter this year because it was just one loop around the gym.
Overall, Owen earned $266.50 for technology for his school!! YAY OWEN!
Leftover birthday cake frosting plus amazing cookies…
Thanks to Gramma Jean and Grandpa David…a wonderful week in Fort Walton Beach!
Ladies, listen up. I’ve discovered a game changer if you straighten your hair—you have GOT to check out the Dafni. I got mine on QVC because at the time it was cheaper than Amazon, but less than a week later Amazon now has it cheaper. This cut my straightening time from 45 minutes (including blow drying with a round brush and then ironing) to 10 minutes (15 tops). I can’t gush about this thing enough: DAFNI The Original Hair Straightening Ceramic Brush.
This result took me TEN minutes:
My review can be found here but here it is. (Sidenote: I learned you can’t say HOLY $H!TBALL$ in a review. LOL)
I have long naturally wavy hair that takes me, on average, 35-40 minutes to blow dry straight and then another 15 minutes or so to touch up with a steam iron (actually a Maxius Maxiglide MX-597 One Step Hair Straightening Iron with Steam Burst Technology). But I am always on the lookout for a revolutionary hair straightener and I’ve tried a bunch of them. I’ve actually been using the Maxiglide for 10+ years because it was so awesome–until now, I would have said it was revolutionary. But this? The Dafni? HOLY SMOKES. This might just be the best money I’ve EVER spent!
I went into the first use with some trepidation as products like these generally have big claims and then generally don’t come through. But what you see in my photos literally took 10 minutes. TEN MINUTES! I then spent another five going over some sections a few more times and trying to get the ends better, but still…15 minutes?! FIFTEEN MINUTES?! ABSOLUTELY AMAZING.
Is it perfect? No. Obviously your hairdresser doing a salon blow-out will get it smoother and it will look better, but for an average person doing this at home? Yes. You can recreate your own efforts in a fraction of the time. My after photo with the Dafni is what my hair looks like after I blow it dry with a round brush for 40 minutes!
Also, my arms aren’t tired from holding a blow-drier and/or iron for 40 minutes and I’m not sweating from blowing hot air at my head for 40 minutes. I used to seriously plan ahead when I was going to dry/straighten my hair because it does take so long, but now? I can pretty much do it whenever I have a spare 15 minutes! The longest part of the process for me today was waiting for my hair to dry because I wanted to do it naturally but that’s no big deal because I do that some days anyway.
I am just completely blown away. My first thought once I finished in ten minutes was HOLY COW. This might be the best money I’ve ever spent on a hair product–kicking the Maxiglide to second place.
I get nothing for referrals—I just love this product!
The second day of Owen’s “Me Museum” week was a sealed letter written by someone else about his special qualities. This is the letter I wrote.
Owen has many special qualities and continues to amaze us with his abilities.
Owen didn’t really start talking until age 3, but once he did, he never stopped! We were worried about him learning how to read, when one day he came home from Pre-K and just picked up a book and started reading it to me! He still impresses me with all the words he knows!
He got his first Lego mini-figure at age 3 and has never looked back. He can follow directions on sets above his age level and then tears them apart and builds his own super cool creations. He is our own Master Builder.
Owen has always been super nice and polite and makes friends very easily. Friends, family, teachers, and even strangers comment on how sweet and polite he is.
He is the best big brother to his little sister—he plays with her, gives her piggy-back rides, reads her books, helps get her breakfast, and makes her laugh.
He is very loving with all of our pets. He takes good care of our dog and gives cuddles to the cats.
Owen is good at swimming, baseball, and soccer. He is a Shark 2—the highest level of swimming (and I know he could beat me in a race). He always gives 100% at every lesson, practice, or game. During his first soccer season, his coach gave him the “most improved player” award.
Owen is a great kid and we couldn’t be prouder to have him as our son.
Only $3.49 for Børn lined boots at Ross! Even if she only wears them for the rest of this season, it’s still worth it!
After a long crazy day I decided it was time for this:
I also happened to be missing a friend of mine in the neighborhood so I texted her and told her I was on my way to her house and I wanted her to come out for a brief Pokémon walk with me. She met me on the street, decided she wanted some margarita, too (yes, I had brought it with me), so we stopped back our house and got her a cup…and since it was cold and we needed to hold our phones for Pokémon, this was her life hack: wear your coat backwards so you can put your drink (with straw!) in the hood! BRILLIANT!
We ended up walking a bit farther than we’d planned…and my phone died because of the cold…but it was a good night (and this is what the end of it looked like). Good times.
We moved the video camera in the living room to hopefully catch something…and we did! The kids LOVED it! SANTA’S BUTT!!
So, I had kept checking and checking and checking every few hours because I really wanted to get pre-check for my flight home if at all possible—and I did finally get it Friday afternoon!!! So, with all my worries about it, there were literally (LITERALLY) zero people in EITHER of the security lines this morning. I got through in about 12 seconds. Well, make that 23 seconds—I forgot my phone in my pocket so that took an extra bit.
So I’m not sure if that is considered a rave…or a fail?
I needed a few new cardigan sweaters…and since I recently passed up a $70 Lularoe version, I figured it was okay to get FIVE for about the same price as one. Right?
Before Owen’s lesson, his instructor came and told us he was going to be testing Owen to see how he’d do on a swim team. He’s trying to get a local team together and he thought Owen was ready. As far as Owen knew, he was just practicing.
After, the instructor told us he thought he was definitely ready…so he’ll let us know if and when he gets a team together. (They have a team right now but it’s 30-45 minutes away from home so we’re not about to do that.)
We told Owen the news on the way home and his was his reaction:
It’s here! It’s finally here! A completely new ring direct from the jeweler where I initially bought it! Thanks a million Wheat Jewelers for taking care of me and my ring from 500 miles away 17 years post-purchase!! 💍
(That said, I did have to pay for it but they made it super easy! And really, the local jeweler here who screwed it up paid for it!)
Hopefully this is the end of my resizing saga!
I weighed myself this morning and…I lost 4# while I was gone and I’m now at my all-time low! That’s what getting back to the principles does. Yay for Naturally Slim!!
Getting ready to board!
Everyone was absolutely wonderful and I look forward to keeping in touch with the new people I met! And where do I start with Marcia? She is so lovely and warm and gracious and generous that I feel so extremely privileged to have met her and been able to spend the weekend with her. I will never forget this weekend!
On my way…