Wanna come hang out?

on May 6, 2014 in Ze Bloggy Goodness with 30 comments by

Sometimes I just wish you could come over.

Maybe I’m a lunatic, but when I type on this side of the screen, it often feels like I’m writing a letter to a friend. I think about you and think about what I want you to know and the funny stories I want to tell you and the things I want to talk about and ask you about.

Blogs can be limiting at times.

In real life, we wouldn’t talk about one topic per day. We’d talk about all sorts of things. We’d sit on my front porch drinking fruit tea (because I’m determined to learn how to make it like Baja Burrito) and conversation would flow back and forth.

I’d ask you your thoughts on Sabbath, and how we are supposed to rest when there is so much work to be done and when there are budgets to be met and when work is always there. There are always words to be written and deadlines to meet and yet, rest? How? If all I have to do is come to Him and I will find rest, why hasn’t it happened yet?

I’d tell you all about Girls of Grace ending for the season on Saturday, a great day in Grand Rapids, but how sad it is to me when anything ends and how much I am going to miss seeing my friends on a regular basis and riding for hours, down interstates I do not know, in a bus full of wonderful people as we play heads-up and laugh until it hurts.

And how much I’ll miss the ministry that Girls of Grace does and the family that we are.

I’d tell you how Pete Wilson at CrossPoint is so nailing it with the sermon series right now and we’d talk about David and Goliath and what it means to tend your sheep even after you’ve been anointed king. And we’d talk about the giants we see in our lives and how to focus on God more than the obstacles. And then you’d know, because you are seeing my face, that the giants have felt huge lately. And I’d know, by seeing your face, that the giants in your life aren’t going away yet either.

Next, I’d make sure you had read The Fault In Our Stars and because you are on my porch in Nashville, I’d say, “I mean, you’re gonna be there Thursday night, right? When we may get to meet John Green at the fan event.”

I think that dude is awesome because he is one of my favorite authors and an incredible advocate for, and a voice to, teens. Also? I’ve been a huge fan of his youtube channel since 2007. (Uh oh, my nerdiness is showing. Not ashamed. 🙂 )

But I’m scared if I meet him, I might:

  • cry (60% possible)
  • talk too much (80% guaranteed)
  • ask a question I regret (50% sure that’ll happen)
  • show him this screenshot from Amazon dating back to September 4, 2012 (99% on this one, accompanied by tears, and I’ll say something like “This was a huge day for me because I never thought my work would ever stand beside yours anywhere but on my own bookshelf.”)

john green

And then you and I would talk about who else we respect enough that it could cause us to act like a total yahoo.

Next, I’d ask you who you would pay $250 per ticket to see in concert, in any venue of your choice. Like, what is your DREAM CONCERT. Because this is a game me and my friends play all the time and it feels right on the front porch today with fruit tea.

So what’s your answer? If you had $250 to spend on a ticket to a concert, what band would you want to see and where would the concert happen?

(I’ll put my answer in the comments today too.)

(Also. Reba would also make me act like a yahoo. For the record.)

(Double also. Thanks for coming over today. <3)


  1. posted on May 06, 2014 at 5:39 AM  |  reply

    Hi, lurker here, just had to chime in and say I’m glad someone else admires John Green as much as I do! (And Reba) I’ve watched that youTube channel for quite some time myself and I’m always trying to recruit people to join in, but they don’t seem to “get it.”

    • posted on May 06, 2014 at 4:06 PM  |  reply

      DFTBA, Kaylie. 🙂 I’m here for ya.

  2. Ginny
    posted on May 06, 2014 at 7:40 AM  |  reply

    Wow! I wish we could do that. That would be fun! My mom and sister went the girls of grace conference on Saturday (I had to take the SAT instead) and my mom came back and said that we should move to Nashville so she could be friends with you. 🙂 In response to your question, I would pick newsboys and I would have them preform in by back yard. That would be awesome!

    • posted on May 06, 2014 at 4:07 PM  |  reply

      Hahahahah. That’s so sweet. Hate that you had to miss the day, but I hope the SAT went well!

      Newsboys are awesome. And to have them in your backyard? Yes. Worth $250.

  3. Emmy
    posted on May 06, 2014 at 7:51 AM  |  reply

    Hmm…Dream Concert. I would say Tenth Avenue North and Switchfoot in Nashville. That would be epicness with whipped cream on top.

    Just sayin’

    • posted on May 06, 2014 at 4:11 PM  |  reply

      Oh man. I just saw Switchfoot last weekend and they were INCREDIBLE.

  4. Pam
    posted on May 06, 2014 at 8:05 AM  |  reply

    I would so sit on the porch and talk about such things with you!

    Thank you for the heads up about The Fault in Our Stars. I’m adding it to my to-be-read list for this summer : )

    And if you’re ever in the eastern parts of NC, let me know. We can so make this porch date happen! : )

    • posted on May 06, 2014 at 4:12 PM  |  reply

      Oh I will, Pam! 🙂

  5. posted on May 06, 2014 at 9:11 AM  |  reply

    Front porch conversation sounds awesome. I’d ask you a ton of questions about your new book, too.

    Wow, you’ve been a longtime Nerdfighter! That’s awesome. It comforts me to know that John is about just as nervous as I am, so he’d understand me fumbling with my words. 🙂 He’s in my state today but four hours away and when I’m in class. Please have extra fun for me. 😀

    • posted on May 06, 2014 at 4:14 PM  |  reply

      Ha! Great point about John.

      And listen, if August comes and the new book questions aren’t answered after you’ve read it, just give me a holler. 🙂

  6. Heather
    posted on May 06, 2014 at 9:11 AM  |  reply

    Well, I don’t know anything about John Green but I may check out the book.

    I’m frugal (isn’t that better than saying ‘cheap’?) so I don’t know if I’d pay $250 for anyone but if it was front row in an intimate venue with someone I admired I might consider it.

    As for the sabbath rest, I have always been grateful for the command to rest. In addition to church, I use Sundays as a day to read and to visit with family. I also unplug (I power down my computer and put the phone away) and I find that helps prevent the nagging need to work. In that way, Sundays become a little like a mini-vacation!

    And I would definitely sit on a front porch with you Annie, or anywhere else for that matter. When I read your posts, I definitely feel like I’m reading a message from a friend 🙂 So glad you take the time to write.

    • posted on May 06, 2014 at 4:19 PM  |  reply

      Love your thoughts on Sabbath! Thank you!!

  7. posted on May 06, 2014 at 9:25 AM  |  reply

    Dream concert? The Civil Wars reunion tour with special guests Johnnyswim

    Yes, John Green’s YouTube channel is HILARIOUS. I recently discovered it while searching around for things about Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury.

    • posted on May 06, 2014 at 4:19 PM  |  reply

      Gosh I think anyone would pay to see Civil Wars again. Sigh….

  8. posted on May 06, 2014 at 12:32 PM  |  reply

    Annie, just so you know, I’m totally stealing this idea for my own blog post. It might even be a series. It’s absolutely perfect for those times when life is so full and we just need to SHARE. Thanks for starting a new trend!

    Concert-wise? I can’t even narrow down the band but I know I’d want to see it up-close-and-personal at Wembley Stadium in London. And maybe intimately at the Sydney Opera House. Maybe the group doesn’t even matter. I’d pay for the location. Ya know… if I could do such a thing.

    Thanks for day of dreaming!

    • posted on May 06, 2014 at 4:19 PM  |  reply

      Steal on, sister! 🙂

      And I love that you are thinking venue as much as band! I’m the same way.

  9. Madi
    posted on May 06, 2014 at 12:33 PM  |  reply

    Um, I would LOVE to porch sit with you! I mean, I read your entire blog one summer, while working at a horrible office, so if you could be my breath of fresh air then, I would greatly enjoy your company breathing in some fresh air on your porch. That and I’ve always wanted to go to Nashville….and I wish I could have seen Frank Sinatra in NYC. But if the artist has to be alive, I’d love to see U2. Or Coldplay. Or Celine. Or Taylor. I did pay $250 for a ticket to see JT last summer…a total spluge but worth every penny!

    • posted on May 06, 2014 at 4:20 PM  |  reply

      I remember that, Madi! hahahahah. love it.

      Well played on JT! I love your concert options.

  10. Caryn
    posted on May 06, 2014 at 2:14 PM  |  reply

    Hi Annie. After listening to you speak at Girls of Grace in Grand Rapids, I was so excited to find you and like you on Facebook and follow you on Twitter. And just as I was about to follow you on Instagram and Pinterest, I read some of your blog.

    I was so happy to have found a great resource for suggestions for great Christian books for my teen daughters, but now I’m confused. When I read this blog entry referencing your love for John Green, I had to stop. I went to Amazon to make sure you were referring to the same John Green who wrote the book Looking for Alaska – the book I just told my daughter I would NOT buy for her.

    One day as I was shopping at the mall with my husband, I received a text from my daughter asking me to pick up a John Green book called, “Looking for Alaska”. I found it and opened it. The first page that I opened up to was shocking to me. I couldn’t believe this was a teen book! I read detailed description of sexual situations. I grabbed another John Green book and opened up AGAIN and saw on the first page I opened up to, more sexual content. I couldn’t imagine purchasing this for my still-innocent 13 year old daughter! I started looking for books in the “Inspirational” section of the store and realized that there was nothing there that would appeal to her (every cover had a young woman in a bonnet). So, I was thrilled to find you. Now…I’m disappointed. Please tell me why these books by John Green are something you would encourage teen girls to read. I sincerely want to hear your thoughts.

    • posted on May 06, 2014 at 4:48 PM  |  reply

      Hi Caryn! Thanks for your kind words about this weekend. I loved being in GRap! And thanks for being encouraged by my writing for teens! I don’t do fiction yet, but maybe someday? 🙂

      As for John Green, first and foremost- you’re the mama here and it is totally your choice for what is right for your daughter. You know her and you know what she should be reading. I’d say the same is true for Harry Potter books and purity books by famous Christians- you know the right time for her to read books as a 13 year old.

      I’ve read all of John’s books and most of them do have a scene or two that I do not agree with personally, but that happens in shows I watch, like Parenthood, and conversations I overhear at the mall. It informs me about what is going on in the world but does not conform my behaviors. And none of the characters in his novels are that different than the students that are in the hallway of every school in America. So while I don’t support all the behaviors of the students in his books, he has managed to write in a language that millions of people, most of them teenagers, have connected with. He tells good stories.

      If someone asked me if their daughter should read John Green’s books, my first answer would be parent choice of course. But- I would say that there is redemption in every book, conversations to be had around very important topics with teenagers, and great opportunity for parents and students to discuss a lot of things from his writings. I feel about John’s books much as I feel about Katy Perry’s movie (see the link below). It is a piece of work that might best be read and discussed together.


      And. FYI. Looking for Alaska was my least favorite of his books, The Fault in Our Stars being my favorite.

      I hope that explains where I am on this a bit. Happy to continue the conversation. <3

      • Caryn
        posted on May 06, 2014 at 6:26 PM  |  reply

        Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts. I certainly can’t argue with what you said! I know my daughters aren’t ready for this type of fiction. My first thought is, what does a young, single person do with the feelings that are stirred up after reading something like that?

        Like you said, I need to be the mom and I am confident that I will find books that will keep her entertained at her maturity level.

        I am hoping that I will find something great for my girls in the Resource List provided by Girls of Grace.

        Thank you for inspiring us with your “Lead Fearlessly” message.


  11. posted on May 06, 2014 at 2:29 PM  |  reply

    Come hang out with me in East Nashville. For real…
    I’m new to Nash and looking to connect the generations. My 20 something daughter lives here and is connected with IF, which makes me so happy.
    I told her I need some IF in my life. 🙂
    I always seem to connect with high school and college age ladies and I hear them when they say they desire to have mentors /encouragers.
    I am missing these people in my life since my move. I get it.
    FYI- agree about Pete. He’s nailing it.
    Come sit on my porch and I’ll make the Tea!

    • posted on May 06, 2014 at 4:50 PM  |  reply

      IF is the best, isn’t it? I’m so grateful to be a part of that group of women. I don’t cross the river that much to East Nasty :), but someday I’ll take you up on that invite! 🙂

      • posted on May 07, 2014 at 9:06 AM  |  reply

        Lol. Perhaps east nasty needs a little more Annie… You must cross the river more often, so many good reasons, starting with the food (The Pharmacy, Marche) and then the park and then the weirdness. Open invite 🙂

  12. posted on May 06, 2014 at 4:56 PM  |  reply

    dream concert? that’s tough. here’s my idea.

    beyonce would open with a few songs.
    nsync would them hop on the stage, singing their best hits.
    justin would stay while everyone else left and he would serenade me.
    celine would come in for a tender moment and sing “my heart will go on”
    while we are all weeping, we’d hear sigur ros play the most beautiful music ever.
    bon iver would hop in there for a moment and play some of my favorite songs.
    usher & boyz 2 men would come out with their newest collaboration and i’d fangirl the whole time.
    hanson would come sing mmmbop.
    mumford would close us with some toe-tappin jams.

    oh, what do you say? that would cost more than $250? a girl can dream. 😉

    • posted on May 06, 2014 at 11:06 PM  |  reply

      You have done such justice to this question I’m practically ready to mail you $250.

  13. posted on May 06, 2014 at 10:09 PM  |  reply

    If I had that money, I’d want to see Creedence Clearwater Revival. Which would involve a time machine. 🙂

    • posted on May 06, 2014 at 11:05 PM  |  reply

      $250 can maybe get you that. 🙂

  14. posted on May 06, 2014 at 11:54 PM  |  reply

    I would gladly spend $250 to see Paul McCartney in concert. I saw him last year and it was the BEST concert ever. I would love to see him again. I was proud to say that I can cross off seeing a Beatle before they all die on my bucket list.

    Or perhaps seeing Josh Groban. I’m seeing him later this summer for the firs time. $250 might get me closer to the stage than where my seat actually is….but then I’d have to fight all the older women for best positioning so perhaps in the back is probably the safest section.

  15. posted on May 10, 2014 at 4:13 PM  |  reply

    I do enjoy it when you talk about everyday things. I would love to come over for a cup of coffee and we could sit down and just chat for hours. I can’t tell you how much excited I am for your new book. I have a stack of books waiting for that final school bell to ring and all my students to leave!

    As for a concert ticket?? Maybe Adele or Mumford. I am weird but I don’t like crowds or General Admission, so I would want to to be a fancy concert and I have a designated seat!! But I also just love to enjoy music in my favorite places, so most of the music I am listening to, I love in my car, in my fav coffee haunts, on trips! Is that weird? Probably. Could I pay $250 for them to come and play in my house?

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