I decided to just dive right on in, head first. Rooted the device, that was great. Then I loaded CWM which was easy. Then I loaded Faux's kernel and that sent me into a panic when at first my device didn't want to boot. I was like freaking out man! But then I did a battery pull and let it boot again, this time it booted properly.
Best thing of this whole endeavor is that the nasty lag beast is gone. This thing is smooth, super smooth. I turned the animations back on just for testing and wow, just wow. Animations are smooth, no lag when switching apps. This is great!