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One week from right now, I will no longer be Mrs. A.  I will be Tracy, the unemployed wannabe writer.  While that sounds scary–and a bit ill-advised–it also sounds so much better than ‘Mrs. A’.

Over the next fourteen months, I will be documenting my ‘year off’, which if you think about it isn’t really a year off (thus the quotes).  Sure, I won’t be teaching.  And no, I won’t be getting paid.  But I will be working.  I’ll be working at creating the kind of life I want–the kind of life that I feel everyone deserves.  A life funded by things that I am passionate about.

I’m looking at this year as a sort of ‘college of the world’ (which is appropriate given my one major project.)  I had originally intended to take time off from work to enroll in an actual college–I wanted to get an MFA in Creative Nonfiction–but then decided that the college of the world would be much more fun (and has a much more diverse curriculum!)  Of course, the college of the world isn’t an actual school, but that doesn’t mean I won’t be learning anything.

And so, each day of my year off I plan to post a (short) ‘What I Did and What I Learned’ post.  I’m doing this for two reasons; one, to keep myself accountable for doing and learning things, and two, to inspire others to take the time to do and learn on their own.  I truly feel that most people–myself included–don’t think about what they are going to be doing for the rest of their lives nearly enough before they become bogged down in actually doing it.  This is my year to think, plan, dream and most importantly, act.

In addition, I plan to do a monthly photo shoot documenting how I physically change as the year progresses.  Will I look calmer or more stressed?  Fatter or thinner?  Most importantly–will I look happier and more fulfilled?  I sincerely hope I will.  That being said, here’s me today, on Week Negative One…

Yes, I’m a bit sunburned.  Today was the school picnic, when we walked 900 kids down to the park and swam at the pool and did relay races all day.  This should also help explain why my hair looks so awful!  The official once-monthly photo will begin next Tuesday, on my first official day as Tracy (not Mrs. A!)

If you are thinking that posting every single day is a pretty tall order, I’m going to have to agree with you.  But I’m not only going to attempt it, I’m going to be posting on my two other blogs, too.  When I am traveling, you will be able to find travel-specific ‘what I learned’ posts over on Suitcase Scholar, my educational travel blog.  And of course I will continue to post about travel plans and destination reviews over on my original blog, Blog on the Run (which hopefully will have a new name and new URL sometime very soon!)

I may be unemployed, but I sure will be busy!