You can immediately do away with the flip clock/weather display by using Beautiful Widgets.
I've been using that on EVERY phone since my HTC Hero
This is how I've personally setup my phone........
I make major use of widgets and gesture controls.
one finger flick up is the app drawer, two up brings up the phone
one down brings up the browser, etc. Pretty much no matter what phone i use now, I sort of setup the front end UI to look like this.
It's really time consuming to set it up though exactly how I want like that. The backgrounds switch per screen and change every hour.
I had my Note 2 setup like this, the Nexus is now, and I started to setup the Note 3 like this, but it takes so much time with creating custom widgets and stuff. For example I show the page with the different groupings like "Music and Audio" and when you click on them it opens up a drop down that's like a folder showing what's in that group.
I use Apex Launcher along with Xposed Installer and various DPI changes after that.
Weather/Time screen is Beautiful Widgets up top with Fancy Widgets on the bottom for the future forecast. clicking on the future forecast opens up Accuweather.