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But, For Real this Time

So, I've been hinting around about it and I've told many of you out loud that this is my plan, but I'm officially ready to say that it's really happening: starting in the late fall/early winter of 2018, I'll be hitting the road (probably in a small RV) to spend a year traveling the contiguous United States. It's been a dream of mine for a while and I am nervous and thrilled and a little bit freaked out that it's finally happening.

Here are some details: I'm spending this winter and spring downsizing all of the junk in my house; listing my house for sale in the spring; packing up what's left of my stuff to move to a storage container; practicing RV camping (hopefully, I'll love it...because this kinda hinges on that!); making my way south; purchasing an RV; attending a dear friend's wedding in September; movin' on out some time after that. It's a lot. Like I said: terrified and excited.

While I'm on the road, I plan to document my travels with photos, blog posts, and videos. I have a HUGE list of places I plan to visit. I'm recruiting friends to join me for parts of the journey, too. Ultimately, though, I want to spend time figuring out where I'd like to belong when I am finished, who I want to be in this "second half" of my life (I'll be 40 pretty soon, afterall), and write about my journeys (both the geographical and the emotional ones). I'm hoping, if you're reading this, that you'll join me by following along.

I spent the past weekend in Texas for a friend's wedding. I went with two friends and we had such a great day exploring Austin on Friday. It reminded me what I really love about travel: finding hidden corners, enjoying local cuisine, meeting new people, and taking time to appreciate a new place. We did all of that. And ate a great deal of Tex Mex. It was wonderful!

I want to extend last weekend's experience into a year-long trek around the US. There will be several ways you can follow along, but the two that are ready now are to check out (it's a new domain...I loved melissahaswanderlust but felt this one was more fun and more expressive of the kind of journey I plan to have...a little anxious). You can also check out my new Facebook page ( If you log in soon, you'll be able to see my trip to the RV dealership this coming weekend (it's gonna be 65 degrees around here!?!?).

I can't wait to do this thing. I can't wait for you guys to join me. And I can't wait to see what's coming up for me. I can't promise it'll always be thrill-a-minute but I can promise it will be honest...and, sometimes, honestly a mess. But, as my personal guru, Dolly Parton, says: "You can't have a rainbow without the rain."

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