I’m Taking a Summer 2015 Genealogy Sabbatical!

Genealogy author and educator Thomas MacEntee is taking a two-month sabbatical during the Summer of 2015 to focus on writing and 2016 lectures!

Have you ever wanted to take an extended period of work off and just do the things you enjoy most? In my last full-time job, my employer Heller Ehrman provided a paid six-week sabbatical to all employees in their 10th year. And then they provided additional sabbaticals every five years after that. Unfortunately, I never made it to ten years . . .

Some of you may know that recently, I underwent bariatric surgery to deal with my lifelong obesity problem. Here is link to my posting on Facebook:

gastric sleeve

I’m asking for your thoughts and prayers tomorrow morning as I take a big step in my life: I will be having bariatric surgery here in Chicago and will undergo a stomach sleeve gastrectomy. It is a relatively new procedure done laparoscopically and 80% of my stomach will be removed. I will be at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Lincoln Park overnight and I will have George post a status update tomorrow afternoon.

Obesity has been a lifelong challenge for me; I know the causes of my overeating and years of therapy and medical guidance have helped, but only to a point. Having surgery has not been a snap decision nor is it seen as a quick fix. I’ve been working towards tomorrow’s surgery since January 2015. When I started having serious health issues late last year, the doctors had a variety of diagnoses. However as the months went on, everything kept pointing back to my obesity. While I did lose over 100 pounds in the late 1980s, now that I’m over 50, I just can’t exercise due to arthritis and the added weight. My current weight is 336 pounds and my goal will be to get under 200 pounds over the next year.

This process is irreversible and means that for the rest of my life I’ll need to modify how and what I eat. I am embarking on a life changing journey and I know that some may think I’m sharing too much here. I’m hoping I can be a role model for others who want to tackle their weight issues and have been considering surgery.


So as I recover from surgery and build new and healthy habits, I decided to lend some focus to my break.

My Genealogy Sabbatical Plans: Re-energize, Re-group, and Re-Up

I wasn’t certain when exactly the surgery would take place, but with the required recovery and restrictions on work and travel, I knew I needed to carve out several weeks without any serious work projects or commitments. So I’ve decided to make the next eight weeks, through 12 September 2015, a work/life sabbatical!

I have no scheduled speaking engagements and no huge projects or tasks to perform. While I do plan on sleeping in each morning and perhaps sit outside and enjoy the warm summer weather, I will balance it with the following:

  • Planning my 2016 genealogy lectures, updating existing lectures and developing new lectures.
  • Update some of my existing e-books on Amazon.
  • Write some new e-books, most based on existing or new lectures.
  • Work on a book about how I started my genealogy business and share the secrets of my success over the past six years.
  • Set up some more affiliate marketing and royalty streams, going after that “long tail” income. It is this income so far in 2015 that has enabled me to not take on work for the next two months.

You can still find me on social media, hanging out on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. I’ll still be maintaining my Geneabloggers.com and Genealogy.bargains websites. But I’ll have “freedom of focus” as I call it, and not have the typical “project pressure” I seem to have each week.

See you at the beach!

©2015, copyright Thomas MacEntee. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Thomas MacEntee
Genealogy educator and author Thomas MacEntee has been researching his family history for more than 40 years and is the creator of Abundant Genealogy, Genealogy Bargains, DNA Bargains, The Genealogy Do-Over and numerous other web-based genealogy and family history properties.