Thursday, November 5, 2015

United We Fall

Open letter to United, sent to their refund department via website, fax and mail. We have not heard back. This happened in June, 2015. We were given the choice between continuing to Paris for a 24 hr stay before we had to return home, or a full refund. We choose the refund and they still have not sent it.

Our choice was between Paris & flying to see Blur, our favorite band, live. We choose Paris & are now forever screwed out of both.

Maya in the hospital 

"My husband and I planned a trip to Paris on United Airlines Flight 5111 ATL to IAD transferring to flight 140 IAP to CDG on June 25th, 2015. However, United flight 140 departed late due to a sick employee of United and even though we were assured we would make our connecting flight, we did not and got stuck in DC.

There were also storms in DC delaying 2 other flights along with our already delayed flight. Most of these passengers were transferring to Paris with us or London. We were told when we landed to run to our gates and we would make our flights. When we arrived at the gate, we were told we missed the flight by 5 minutes and were directed to customer service.

We waited over 45 min at customer service. After 3 flights of passengers got stranded, your employees all left customer service leaving only 2 employees to deal with your customers. We explained to our customer service agent that we have 2 severely disabled and terminally ill children we were paying childcare for, and we were only going to Paris for the weekend. At that point, he understood our problem and gave us the option of a flight to Paris that would only give us 24 hrs in Paris or send us back to Atlanta and United would refund our money. We took the refund option. We are still waiting for it.

I feel that United could have held international flights by 5 minutes in order to accommodate 3 flights of passengers. This time is often made up in the air.

You’ve no idea what it cost us in time & money to plan a weekend away. It’s been 6 years since we could arrange a vacation. We had to coordinate 6 people’s schedules to cover care for our children, including paying to have 2 family members fly in from Pennsylvania. We are extremely and deeply disappointed we didn’t get to Paris after all that. We have no idea when or if we will ever have the opportunity for a vacation again.

Please make this right and honor your offer to refund our tickets.

Gina Gareau-Clark and Joseph Clark"

Julia and Maya at the zoo with Gina & their nurse
I would also like to add that I was also diagnosed with mitochondrial disease on Sept. 2013 and struggle with fatigue, muscle weakness and muscle pain. All the running through the airport was tough on my muscles and cause a lot of pain. I can't relay enough how much this experience has devastated my family on many levels. The hotel and transport immediately refunded our money. We can not recuperate the costs of child care and the plane tickets to get our family here.

Thanks to all who have supported us & tried to give us some respite,
Gina Gareau-Clark

Friday, March 2, 2012

Movin' Right Along

Yesterday was a long day for renovations! It looks fantastic! Today they are finishing up with the backsplash, hood installation, painting, and various loose ends!

Painting the ceiling
Doorknobs added

Close-up of fleur-de-lis doorknobs in dining room

Fun times installing the dishwasher
Adding handles to drawers in kitchen
Installed range!!!!!!

Installed fridge & dishwasher
Installed sink
Cupcakes! First thing I baked in my new oven!!!!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Humble Pie & Granite

This week has had its ups & downs. Julia has been slightly sick keeping us on edge. She hasn't been able to keep down her Pediasure and has been sleeping a lot. Maya has not been sleeping much at all, taking to screaming all night because she wants to get up & play.

My cousin's husband died unexpectedly of a massive stroke this week. The funeral is this morning. It is the kind of thing which makes you realize how precious every moment is, and also wonder what it is you've done with your life. What will I be remembered for?

I have decided to explain mitochondrial disease a little better, in celebration of World Rare Disease Day (which was yesterday). The mitochondria convert food into energy to power your into body, organs, etc. Having dysfunctional mitochondria has been linked to manifest in a myriad of ways: mitochondrial disease (when 2 or more organs are affected), muscular dystrophies, typical & complex migraine headaches, intellectual & developmental impairment, deafness & blindness, Alzheimer's, Huntington's Disease, and so on.  

Julia & Maya are constantly fatigued from loss of energy. They overheat very easily. When their bodies are fighting to maintain body temperature, fight off an illness, or to just get through the day, their limited energy is used up and are unable to support their organs & typical body functions, which can cause permanent damage.

There is no treatment or cure for mitochondrial disease. Research has come a long way, though, even in the the 3 years since Julia & Maya were diagnosed. As you can see from the paragraph above, research on the mitochondria has the potential to help many diseases. I truly believe it holds the key to improving many lives.

We are walking to benefit the mitochondrial research April 21st at Olympic Centennial Park. Anyone in the area is invited to walk with us. Please consider a donation & provide hope for my daughters & the countless others who can benefit from research. Info here

So I bet you want to see the granite now????? They installed the granite on Tuesday. I just LOVE it! I was going to go with white with black swirls before seeing my options. Christina with Platinum Kitchens  suggested this multi-color cream-based granite & I decided to go with her recommendation. I am SO GLAD I did! I absolutely love the granite!!! 

Counter tops before

New granite counter tops!

Granite counter tops & back splash leading up to the top of the breakfast bar-I think this looks incredible!

Granite in dining room pantry

Today they are starting the finish! Painters, plumbers, installers, OH MY! I can't wait to have my dishwasher back!!!! And my new range installed! It is very exciting! Everyone at Platinum Kitchens has done an outstanding job!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Kitchen Day 5: I Believe In A Thing Called Love

Kitchen day 5 was a very busy day! Workers installed cabinets in both my kitchen & dining room. Also put in some can lighting into our dining room & removed the chandelier, which Julia liked to swing on!

Julia "hiding" from the construction

The girls were out of school for Presidents' Day, but Mom & Dad took the to the mall for an adventure!
Next week is an act of patience, as today they come to measure the granite; then it will be a week to get it in, cut & installed. So I will be a week without a kitchen & no "progress" until the granite is installed. The wait is more than worth it, for a life time of a beautiful, functioning kitchen.

Adding lights to dining room
Pull-out shelves in dining room
Finished cabinets
Installing dining room cabinets

The kitchen looks absolutely amazing. I never would have believed I would have such a beautiful kitchen! 

Setting breakfast bar facing
Finished cabinets
Finished cabinets

After (so far)

Monday, February 20, 2012

Kitchen Day 4: Grout

Kitchen Day 4: workers laid the grout, and the cabinets arrived!!!!!

Putting grout over the tile

Cleaning grout off the tile

Finished floor!!!

Cabinets have arrived for Monday installation

Friday, February 17, 2012

Kitchen Day 3: Tile

Fangtasia is the only one not bothered at all by all the construction
Kitchen day 3: tile placement

Day 3 was a long day! Work on the floors began at 9am & lasted to about 8pm! The tile had to set overnight, so we were not allowed to go into the TV room or kitchen area all day. The girls had a bit of a rough time, but were certainly better than they had been the first day! 

My father came over at night, which was a big help! Not only do I love the results of the floor tile, but since there was no TV I caught up on some reading! (Richelle Mead's Succubus series, real classy stuff)

Thanks for following this journey with us!

Laying down Wonder Board (my favourite super-hero)

They laid out the 3 patterns for me to chose from....I chose the brick lay-out, there was no time for a vote

Setting the tile

Finished tile placement-I LOVE the brick pattern!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Kitchen Day 2: She's Electric

Kitchen Day Two: Electrical & structural

Maya & Julia did FAR better yesterday! We were able to let the girls into the TV room last night, just blocking off the kitchen area. They were much happier!

Setting the wall for the breakfast bar on one side & cabinets on the other

Setting ceiling for more lighting

Breakfast bar wall in place, setting up dry wall along perimeter

Lights are in-electric set for under-cabinet lighting

Maya enjoying the new view