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SoCS: On Being a Night Owl, Listening Skills, Dogs in Heaven, and Making Christmas Last


Here’s the prompt:

Your prompt for #JusJoJan and Stream of Consciousness Saturday is: “first thing.” Start your post with the words, “first thing” and go from there. Bonus points if you end your post with the last thing. Have fun!

First thing in the morning…. it would be nice if I said I pray before I get out of bed. But I don’t usually. It would be a nice habit. To be honest, the first thing I do in the morning before I get out of bed is hit the snooze. I am not a morning person. I am a night owl. The husband is a morning person. Good for him. Lately, I have started listening to music on Youtube to help me wake up – James Taylor is my favorite, but yesterday, I listened to a Ted Talk. I have to find a good Ted Talk, and one might wonder that if I’m going to go to all that trouble to scroll and find a Ted Talk, I might as well get up. But I’m a night owl. Listening to a Ted Talk helps even if I drift off a little.

First thing we need to learn is how to listen to each other to understand. I’m thinking about the political divide problem. But some people are good at listening and need to be more assertive which means being honest with RESPECT. If someone talks a lot, goes on and on, like one of my old boyfriends used to do, I cannot hold that many ideas in my head to be able to process. It can be overwhelming.

That’s why, when I was working on bringing my soulmate to me, I made up a song to the tune of Janis Joplin’s song about “Oh, Lord, won’t you buy me a color TV.” I changed the words to, “Oh Lord, won’t you find me, a man who can listen.” David is a good listener when I need to talk about something important. When it’s a more mundane thing about household chores, well that’s another thing. But nobody’s perfect.

First thing I want to see when I get to heaven is my dogs, especially the dog I wrote about yesterday. I’m sorry Jesus. Maybe the dogs should come after Jesus. Yeah, unless Jesus is busy and wants to let me get settled in at the cabin in the woods with the dogs.

First thing to do when we have a list of things to do might be the most important thing unless it’s something really hard and you have to break it down into small steps and maybe it would be okay to do something easy on your list so you can check something off.

My Christmas tree is still up. Don’t laugh, sometimes I’ve left it up into February because I love Christmas lights. I took down the lights outside except the ones on the fence, because they are pretty, and things look so bare when the Christmas stuff is down. I took the decorations off the tree and put them in a box. It still has the colored lights, because they are attached. I took down the Christmas cards. This is actually good for me to have this stuff done before MLK day. Taking down the Christmas tree and getting it up in the attic this weekend will be the last thing. But there’s usually something that I have forgotten to put in the attic in which case, that will be the last thing.

Oh, yeah, let’s have cats in heaven, too.

For more streams of consciousness and Just Jot Januarys, visit our host, Linda Hill at:

The Friday Reminder for #SoCS & #JusJoJan 2021 Daily Prompt – Jan. 16th | (

Author: JoAnna

An open minded, tree-hugging Jesus follower, former counselor, and life-long lover of animals, I'm returning to my creative roots and have published my first book: Trust the Timing, A Memoir of Finding Love Again as well as the short version: From Loneliness to Love.

35 thoughts on “SoCS: On Being a Night Owl, Listening Skills, Dogs in Heaven, and Making Christmas Last

  1. You earned your bonus point 🙂

  2. Heaven wouldn’t be complete without dogs. I think Jesus would understand. Besides, like you say, he’s probably busy.

  3. Jesus probably has a few dogs of His own.

  4. Fun musings JoAnna. To more listening, love, pets, and Christmas spirit year round.

  5. I like to take my Christmas tree down as fast as possible after the day, JoAnna. It hangs over my head as a duty that I have to do. I also always forget to pack away something. I found a decoration just yesterday that I’d forgotten.

  6. I used to be a morning person, but since retirement, that has changed. I love not having that schedule of “in bed by 9:30, up by 5:30” to mess with good sleep. In regard to your picture of the entrance to heaven, perhaps we can add a cat face too for greeting purposes (sorry Jesus). What would we do without our critters either in the here or after?

  7. You are a delightful writer – must add up to a delightful person. :>)

  8. Sad to say, JoAnna, my relationship with man’s best friend is not the same as yours. I’ve come from a world where our relationship with dogs is fraught with the dark history of slavery. My trauma with dogs trained to attack intruders runs deep.

    • Thank you for letting me know this, Rosaliene. In the past, I have wondered why anyone would not like dogs, since my experience has been mostly limited to dogs showing unconditional love and protection. I was vaguely aware that an individual might have experienced trauma with dogs. Thank you for reminding me. It wasn’t until I saw the movie, Harriet, (twice,) that it finally started to become more clear – how dogs were used in the history of slavery and what a powerful effect that could have, even across generations. I am very sorry. Please let me know if you want to discuss this further. I think my emotional ? understanding about this is limited.

      • Thanks for understanding. From photos I’ve seen of the Jim Crow Era, the police used “vicious dogs” to control black protestors, a terror tactic that has historical roots in slavery and colonialism. In then British Guiana, the local “riot police” used German Shepard dogs, called Alsatian in Guyana, to control peaceful demonstrators. They also made excellent guard dogs–later replaced by the Doberman or the Pit bull–against house invasions by thieves.

        • Thank you for these details. It’s a shame that intelligent and courageous dogs tend to be exploited and put in danger to serve those in power. German Shepherds are one of my favorite breeds. I’ve rescued three shepherd mixes and one purebred who was a stray. I hope any of your future experiences with dogs are good ones.

  9. this post made me smile, JoAnna. ❤

  10. I think Jesus 100% understands wanting to see our dogs. That sort of unconditional love is a gift. And I say enjoy those Christmas decorations as long as you like. 🙂

  11. Cute image of the dog in heaven, and cats have to be there I agree. Glad you found a mate that listens and my little table top tree is still decorated. Too busy packing for our move. So that may be one of the last things for me.

  12. I love so much of what you do, and what you are but not a follower of a god. The bible is a work of fiction and the number of religions in the world point to a common human issue across all races and creeds. That is that being human can be very scary and that we all cannot avoid the one inevitable fact that we are going to die! In my old country there is a saying: “There are only two certainties in life; death and taxes.” But the belief in a god is very entrenched in both the USA and the UK. Hope you don’t mind me speaking up. I am a very firm believer in atheism!

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