A year of Jelly Bean Worthy decisions

So here we are April 30, 2019, one year after I struggled to explain to my Pre-K daughter the importance of May 1st in the world of higher education. What started as an MVP of what I thought was to help my daughter to make better decisions, has turned out to have a major impact on my life. What a crazy trip around the sun the last year has been. It turns out that the JellyBean Jar has taught me more then it has taught Avery. I am lucky in that Avery takes after her mother and is naturally pretty good at making the right decision. I must say there have only been a handful of times that she did not earn her jellybean. It was a fewer number of times then Daddy for sure. Each time she understood exactly why she didn't earn it and we discussed each time in detail. The surprising thing is that this year made me realize is that I never stood a chance. Avery had an unfair advantage. She was going into kindergarten. It turns out that it really is true, All I need to Know I learned in Kind…

Update # 5 Over -Under

Over-Under - Not taking the time to occasionally chill is a bad decision and there is no better teacher than Jimmy Buffet,

I was speaking with a trusted professional who straightens my head out as needed. He highly recommended that I view this blog as a journal and to keep it up if it helps level my mind. I found that it does. I also found at least one person actually reads this, so that has inspired me to submit another post. RT I am sure you will appreciate this old picture. RT made me realize that I have not updated this in a really long time. Thus I decided to do something therapeutic and create a new post. So what is new? Not sure but I know what is old and that is me; I turned the big 50 last week. Thus maybe theoretically this is a milestone worth talking about right? I have to be honest I only thought I would ever make it to 43. That always was my special magic number, thus in my crazy head, I am playing with house money. Besides people who know me well, know that Flag Day mean…

Update #4 - Why did this go Viral?

June 27, 2018 - I want to make something totally clear. I understand that no one reads this blog. Fact is that is kind of by design. Since I don't mention this to anyone mostly because I am still formulating what THIS is.

All I ever do is post an apparently random #earnyourjellybean on my LinkedIn posts. That's it and when I post on LinkedIn it is purposely meant to be random an unreferenced. Yet within hours of finishing my post about Jeremy, I just posted a simple post on Linkedin and this happened:

Why would a simple post like this go viral? It really wasn't that witty. I can't say why it went viral, I can only say that it did. To me, it confirmed that last night I made the right choice with Jeremy. It gave me encouragement to simply continue to just focus on earning my jellybean and everything else will take care of itself. #earningmyjellybean.

What you can't see in the current post above is the number of times the post was viewed in just a few hours after bein…

Update #3 - Jeremy from Austin

June 26, 2018 - This has been my worst week for Jellybeans since we started the project. I will miss a total of 5 jellybean ceremonies this week. Now it hasn't been because I have been making bad decisions, as much as, I have been playing the cards that life has dealt me.  As I mentioned in the first post, my job is selling AI solutions to Higher Ed. So to do my job effectively, I need to be where the schools are. And this week that took me to Austin, Texas for the NASFAA Annual Conference which normally would be a great thing.

Except life had some other plans with the cards it was dealing. You see last Friday my mother was admitted to the hospital and word didn't get to me until 8:30 pm Friday night. Not only was I scheduled to fly out Saturday, but the hospital is 30 minutes away. The biggest challenge was that visiting hours end at 9:00.  Thus I have some decisions to make. So I do exactly what my mother always taught us to do when someone you love is in the hospital. She …

Update #2 Oh the places she will go....

June 7, 2018- Today is a very proud day for this dad because it is graduation day. Actually, Avery woke up a little groggy so I immediately began teasing her that it was "Coronation Day", which only proves that I have seen Frozen a few times too many.

 Although we just started Project JellyBean on May 1, 2018. It has already started to make a huge impact. I can't say for sure how much of an impact it has had on Avery, but I can say the impact it has had on me.  As a matter of fact, Avery has yet to miss earning a JellyBean. She has come close a few times but if she starts moving in a direction that we question; all we need to do is say the two simple words "No Jellybean". Those two words snap her back in line. It happens so fast it is amazing. Even more impressive is the degree that she openly shares her opinion on my actions. She is very quick to question if I should have a jellybean that day. There have been a few days where I haven't mostly due to not be…

Update 1: "No Jellybean for YOU"

I knew it wasn't a matter of IF but simply a matter of WHEN I was going to NOT earn my jellybean. You see my job requires me to visit with colleges and attend conferences around the country. I simply do not have the luxury of being home every night for the jellybean ceremony. So I knew there would be a few that I would miss. That is one of the important reasons that the jellybeans come out of the jar every day rather than collect in the jar. It is very important to visually appreciate what I have. I want to be reminded of how fast that jar empties irrespective of the choices that I make. I have already found that it makes me want to make the most out of every chance we have together.

Less than two weeks into our MVP, on Mothers Day 2018 no less, I would need to hit the road. My Mom was going to be at the University of Richmond seeing her second youngest grandchild graduate from college. Something she had seen her 7 other grandchildren do, and some of them more than once.

As luck w…

The Origin of #earnyourjellybean

May 1, 2018 - In honor of National Decision Day 2018, I tried to explain to my daughter the importance of today. Unfortunately, she is only in PreK, and it just wasn't going as well as I would like. So we decided to focus instead on the decisions we make every day. Because after all, there aren't that many really big decisions in life. It is the millions of little decisions that we make every day that determines who we are as people. So being a tech guy by nature, I told my daughter we will create a system that will train us both to make better decisions.
First, the UX and UI needed to make these vague concepts more tangible to an average user. Next, we would need to create timelines that would allow us to measure our progress. The interface needed to clear so that the visual is the same on any user device. Although it did not need to be mobile first it, it should have a similar look and feel on Mac, Windows, Android, and IOS. What about gamification? Of course, it needs that…