My Essentials

Essential PlannerWhether they are items that help us be more productive, simple reminders that make us happy or things that we need to keep around for sanity purposes. In life, we all have our essentials. The things we won’t go anywhere without. From home to work and everywhere in between, here are the five things that I keep with me at all times.

1) My iPhone

I know that most people think it’s a problem, but my iPhone is my lifeline. First and foremost I need it for communication. From work to home and everywhere in between, I like to stay in touch with my friends, family and customers. Plus, with my busy schedule no one would ever catch me if I were tied to a landline.

Outside of the obvious benefits of a cell phone, I also rely on my iPhone to access my New Life Chapel App. No matter where I am, I have access to the Bible, past sermons, event calendars and music. It certainly makes doing a daily devotion much easier! Finally, I wouldn’t get very far without easy access to my Dropbox App. For those that use Dropbox, enough said. For those that don’t … go download it. Now.

2) My iPhone Charger

Refer to #1 and you will understand why I generally need a charger by noon on any given day.

3) Business Cards

Our business is very important to me and my dedication began the first time that I met Roy. When I entered the house to meet him and JoAnn for the first time, he barely said a word before reaching into his pocket to hand me; you guessed it, a business card. While I didn’t know it at the time, it wasn’t long before I would have a stack of Yelton’s business cards of my own.

When I joined the family business I remember one very specific rule. If you were ever caught without a business card, you were fined $50. At the beginning, I learned the hard way, having to pay in a few times. Luckily, I’ve caught a few other Yelton’s employees empty handed over the years so I’ve been able to even the score. Maybe I should go walk the floor right now and see if I can make a few bucks!

4) Planner & To Do Notebook

Lots of people make fun of me, but even with my iPhone next to me, I still have a written planner. It needs to be within an arms length or something feels off. I think I got this from my momma, who’s the same way. I used to consider myself a loyal Franklin Covey girl but, as of late, I’ve migrated to the Erin Condren world. Look her up! Her planners are amazing.

There are many days where I don’t know whether I am coming or going. In those moments, I rely on my planner and get back on track. But that’s not all. With me at all times, I also carry a To-Do notebook. Did anyone say Type A? Yes, admittedly, but I can’t help it. Day or night, you’ll find me taking notes and making lists to ensure that nothing falls through the cracks.

5) Trenta Iced Green Tea Unsweetened from Starbucks

When I think of addiction this tasty beverage comes to mind. It’s not much of a secret; if you see me there is usually Trenta Iced Green Tea right by my side. I gave up soda a while back and have never been a huge fan of coffee, so this is my beverage. Zero calories and zero sugar. Make fun of me all you want, but at least my addiction is a healthy one. Or so I tell myself!

Along with the beverage, I’m not going to lie; I love the attention that you get as a regular Starbucks customer. I’ve got my Gold Card, the Starbucks App is on my phone and I frequent the drive-thru window more often than I visit the ATM. Beyond being a regular, it’s possible that I have even gotten a little too comfortable with Starbucks. My sister, co-worker and I gossip about the drive-thru barista as if he was our boyfriend. If he’s working, we all know and bonus points if he calls us by our name. So what if it’s listed on our Starbucks Gold Card? It’s always good to feel important, even if for just a few moments.

So there you have it, five things that you can count on me to have at all times. What’s on your list?

Sun, Sand & Smartphone Apps

I was really excited when Allegiant Air announced its arrival into Cincinnati. Upon hearing the news I immediately started planning a summer excursion to Florida. It was perfect, while the boys played baseball in Disney I would take some time to kick back, relax and rejuvenate. Don’t get me wrong, I love baseball, but this chick was in desperate need of some beach time. Plus, what’s the big deal when you can get live score updates from anywhere these days! Don’t judge me (please).

After researching a few areas in Florida, it was decided. While the boys headed out for their games, Trent and I would post up in Juno Beach to visit my good friend Kendall and her husband Chad. Plan in place, time to book. As I browsed through the awesome “a la carte” rates offered by Allegiant I decided they were too good to be true and invited my niece, Kendall, as well. It didn’t take much convincing. She was on board.

Our flight path took us from CVG to Sanford Airport in Orlando. For those who travel often, Sanford is the best-kept secret in the world of airports. No lines. No waiting. It’s even smaller than Dayton! After snagging our luggage we headed towards our first stop, the rental car kiosk.Tina_Florida2

In an effort to be economical and save on fuel, I had originally booked a compact car. Well, little did I know that when they say compact they actually mean an itsy-bitsy-teenie-weenie Smart Car. While I love those little things, I knew that it wasn’t going to fit the bill for this trip. With long drives ahead, new highways and a lot of planned stops, now wasn’t the time for my first Smart Car adventure. Luckily they had a couple of mid-sized cars on the lot so we didn’t have to pack in like sardines. We left it up to Trent who chose a bright red Hyundai Accent as our chariot and we headed on our way.

When we hopped in the car my niece asked where we were headed. No problem, I plugged the information into my favorite travel app, WAZE. If you’re on the road a lot, consider WAZE your new best friend. Not only does it give you accurate directions, but it also provides you with fun facts and important details along the way. Do you want to know where the police are hanging out? Would you like to steer clear of accidents or bad road conditions? How about terrible weather? WAZE knows it all.

While I consider myself a seasoned WAZER, my niece took it to a whole new level. The moment we decided we were famished she whipped out her ROAD NINJA app to reveal the closest restaurant. Easy. How technology comes so natural to kids these days, I have no idea.

By the time we had identified the location of our next feast our phones were dying quickly. We attempted plugging them into the USB charger in the car. No luck. We turned to WAZE, which pointed us to the nearest Walgreen’s to purchase a new charger. At this point I was starting to believe that my niece, Kendall, had super powers. With access to nearly every cell phone app in the world, she was saving our day!

After juicing up the cell phones and satisfying our bellies, it was finally off to Juno Beach. We set our ears on the US PL8S game while keeping our eyes peeled for different license plates. Arizona. New Hampshire. Colorado. Halfway to our destination we were convinced that we’d find them all, but, alas, we ended at 60%. Alaska, watch out, I’m still looking for you.

When we arrived in Juno Beach I immediately felt relaxed. The waves were crashing. The breeze was soft. The destination was nothing short of beautiful. We spent the week digging our toes in the sand, visiting local museums, shopping (of course), and swimming in our friends’ pool. We also got a little time in with my family as well – the Woodses. Unfortunately, we aren’t related to Mr. Tiger Woods himself, but our golfing skills are almost as good. Take my word for it.

By the time the boys met up with us we were ready to hit the beach again. Can you blame us? On Saturday morning, we darted towards the sand where we got to see Sea Turtles in action as they made their way back to the ocean. What an awesome experience. Come Sunday, we packed it up and headed back to Orlando to close the trip.Tina_Florida

En route to Orlando we decided to stop in Christmas, Florida for an airboat ride. Back in the day Roy’s parents lived in Christmas and Mark spent a lot of summers on the very river that we were on. It was kind of cool to imagine him hanging out there in his younger years. Our trip guide was amazing and if you ever find yourself in Christmas I highly recommend visiting Midwest Airboats. Santa Claus sightings, not guaranteed.

For our final stop (insert a tear), we decided to head to Universal City Walk. Guided by our fearless leader, Kendall, and her array of cell phone apps we, once again, got to experience the best of Florida. After strolling around, we decided to have dinner at NBA City where the food and the service were something that I could appreciate!

When the weekend came to an end we were sad to kiss our vacation goodbye, though we knew it had come time to make our way home and get settled back into our routine. Overall, the trip was awesome I would highly recommend all of the excursions that we went on. I also advise everyone to jump on the cell phone app train. From restaurant recommendations to accurate directions and everything in between, they make traveling so easy!

And, if you don’t like being tied to your smart phone, travel with a sixteen year old. They’ve got this technology thing down!