joan's house

Quote of the Month
Under the frozen surface of our being we might experience a thaw and begin to melt into a new existence.  
Joan Anderson
Joan and Robin's Winter Adventures!

joan and robin's winter adventure 

Retreat to Joan Anderson's Cottage!

Private Retreat

Books by Joan Anderson
If you are no longer interested in receiving news from Joan Anderson, you can unsubscribe from our mailing list by clicking on the unsubscribe link at the bottom of the newsletter.
Some Unfinished Thoughts
Take The Plunge 

      "I'm going to take the plunge," my husband announced as he rolled out of bed on New Year's Day with an energetic spirit I hadn't seen in awhile.

     "The what?" I asked, half asleep yet mildly curious.

     "Just read about it in the paper," he said. "It's a charity event. You pay twenty bucks, go down to the beach, and at noon, everyone dives in the Nantucket Sound."

     Has he lost his mind, I wondered as I headed for the kitchen to put on a pot of coffee. This is a man who, during the cold winter months spends hours sitting by the fire dreaming of Florida. But alas, when I returned to the bedroom I found him rummaging through his dresser drawer in search of a bathing suit and then stuffing two beach towels into a rather flimsy bag while mumbling something about this being a New Year's tradition.

      "People all over the world take the plunge," he said. "Hell, didn't we just do the yurt thing last week? Might as well keep the adventures coming."

     I was reminded of a mantra he had been repeating frequently-"Adults learn best," the sociologist Jack Mezirow said, "when presented with disorienting dilemmas." Was that the reason for the plunge? The very mention of the word made me think of a plunger-that clever device which unclogs toilets. Perhaps he felt the need to be unclogged? Whatever, our life had become pretty mundane, that is until the yurt experience in Idaho over the Christmas vacation.

     We challenged ourselves by buckling into snowshoes and trekking a mile into the Idaho wilderness to spend 24 hours in sub-zero temperatures in a Mongolian style yurt with our children and grandchildren, going against the warnings of well meaning friends.

     "In the bleak midwinter," one blurted out, "and at such an altitude."

     "What if you have a medical emergency," asked another, citing the 8,000 feet elevation. "For God's sake," he continued. "At least get a snowmobile to haul in your gear."

     Funny how human nature is, but the more they protested the more we wanted to have the experience-- from hauling supplies up a steep mountainside, to splitting and chopping wood, boiling snow for water, and yes, going to the bathroom outside in the middle of the cold, dark night!

     In retrospect, my husband's little foray into the frigid waters of the Nantucket Sound didn't seem like much in comparison. I quickly got dressed, donned my down jacket, and went out to heat up the car.

     As it turned out there were a good 30 or 40 others (mostly men) standing ready to do the same thing. Their nonchalant attitude soothed any remaining anxiety and as the clock struck noon in they went, splashing through the water like a family of polar bears.

     I was ready with the towel and a small shot of single malt Scotch as he emerged looking proud as a peacock.

     No question that our lives have been on hold, what with the death of my mother in May, and total knee replacement for me in June. High time for a new chapter. And so it is that I am scouring the newspaper for an equally challenging plunge-nothing like a little spousal competition. I'm considering training for the bike race from Plymouth to Provincetown or maybe plot out the course to walk the outer beaches of Cape Cod as Henry David Thoreau did back in the 1800's. I managed to stay up past midnight on New Year's Eve, taking a lawn chair out of the shed and sitting on the porch to gaze at the very rare blue moon.

     Perhaps that was my first plunge for the decade.. For as Rainer Maria Rilke said: "And now, let us welcome the new year, full of things that have never been."

     What might that be for you?

Happy New Year and Happy New Decade!


 winter wonder by the sea
Two spaces are open for the February 5-7, 2010 retreat due to an emergency cancellation. Email Liz Lockwood immediately if you are interested in attending this retreat.
 may 2010 retreat
Gift Yourself this Mother's Day With a Retreat on Cape Cod "If it is a woman's nature to nurture, then she must nourish herself." Anne Morrow Lindbergh. Spring is the time to plant our second journey seeds - to chart a course for a woman's individual journey - to become someone beyond the roles that we play. This intimate weekend with no more than 21 women at the Winstead Inn, just twenty steps from the sandy shores of the Nantucket Sound on Cape Cod, is designed for retreat and repair.  More...
Continue to check out Joan's web site 
 for new items of interest and upcoming events!!  
Forward to a Friend
Do you know someone who would enjoy words of wisdom from Joan? You can share Joan with a friend! Just add them to our mailing list by clicking on the link below!!
Add A Friend To Joan's List