On Repeat

If you don’t know me or my not-so-absurd study habits, you’ll probably benefit from knowing that my favorite song is The Intro by The XX. Y’all have heard this song a bazillion times, trust me. It’s that super catchy low-key beat that can be streamed together for 10 hours (seriously though, it’s on YouTube) and there are (fun fact) absolutely no lyrics. Just looking at iTunes on my computer you can see the blatant gap between my top 25 most played songs, coming in first The Intro with 719 plays (as of right now) and coming in a “close” second Clocks by Coldplay with a solid 76 plays. So, you guessed it, instead of listening to YouTube’s ten hour version of The Intro, I’ve dedicated my time solely to listening to my 6 minute version, on repeat, every single time I study, or attempt to study at least.

I claim to be spontaneous, one of my top three traits, but I am pretty damn predictable. I’m a creature of habit. Aren’t we all though? I’ve decided that I need to leave myself opportunities for new experiences, for stepping outside my comfort zone. So this week, I had a couple new rites-of-passages. Some good, some bad. And instead of doing my usual lists on this site, I’ll change it up and purge some words without any other context. So who wants to know what happened recently? Ya? Okay cool. Here goes nothing.

I went on my very first “official” date. I didn’t get let into the student section for my very first time and sadly it was for the K-state game. Us roommates had our very first fight about doing the dishes. I tried a coconut-oil hair mask. I went to Lab, that weird freshman bar. I got accepted to the London study abroad program for Strat Comm. I listened to new music. Found a new song to play on repeat. It’s called Bad Intentions by Niykee Heaton. I went to my very first hockey game. Go Stars! I got a 97.5% on my advertising test. I got my very first C on a comm paper. I saw a couple new movies. My roommates and friends had some exciting new experiences too, but it’s not my place to tell. Although, I want to brag for them. It took me 40 minutes to park at school on a rainy day. TCU has officially beat all of the Big 12 teams in the past three years. We rock!

Alright, I think that’s all my little mind can think off. I’ll let you know if any more cool stuff happens. This is just a reminder to give yourself a break. Give up that monotonous daily/weekly/monthly/yearly routine for just a quick moment. Make it memorable, intentional, and freeing.

Cheers to New Experience and Peace Out,

Tara

Words of Encouragement

I am feeling very thankful today. I notice that sometimes my ego blinds me from seeing everything that is good in life. Often, I forget how amazingly wonderful my friends are. Sorry, friends! The past few days have been kind of hard for me. Seeing that my entire Instagram feed is full with pictures from amazing adventures around the world, especially Europe… especially Paris. I am jealous. Very jealous. As this weekend was my first “free weekend” I thought it was going to be absolutely wonderful. Nope. It wasn’t. It was nice, but not wonderful. I’m so jealous of everyone else’s escapades that I forget to plan my own. Lately, (the past two days) I have been feeling kind of lonely. I wait for a text, for a call, for the doorbell to ring or a knock on the door. Nope. Nothing. Nada. But then I realized, I did get those texts, calls, and knocks on the door…  it just wasn’t to hang out, it was better.

“How are you doing?” “I miss you!” “Where did you get that maple bacon donut?”

and my favorite one from my little: “I hope you had a fun day at the fair and that it was your perfect fair day that you have always wanted.” Oh yeah, I went to the fair with my best friend… and even though we complained together the entire time… I mean we were at the fair so I wouldn’t necessarily say that life was that bad.

another favorite from a good friend: “You know I am a big Tara McQueen fan (blogger, person, advice giver, good friend.)

 

Thank you, friends! I know there were plenty more that I didn’t stop and think wow thank you. I regret not appreciating these little notes and I am making a pact with myself to notice the small things. You’ve heard the little things are the ones that matter most or how bout stop and smell the roses, right? How cliché am I? I just want to give a shout out to all my friends who continuously make my day. Thank you for always being there for me. I’m always here for anyone. If you are feeling down or just need someone to talk to please don’t hesitate. I am here for you. If you are too shy or embarrassed you can always use my tumblr account to stay anonymous. 

Look up Philippians 4:8 if you are in need of some extra faith. 

Stay lovely,

Tara

Distractions

What comes from doodling during Philosophy class… oops

Distractions

“They’re bad” they say

I tend to disagree

Life can’t always be serious

or be boring and straight.

What is life without freedom,

without room to roam?

So constricting and stuffy,

you can’t think on your own.

Distractions teach you things

you can only know from experience.

To rebel against the norms for a greater cause.

They open up ideas

and entertain solutions

and that’s why you are

my favorite pollution.

You are my distraction.

What is the Meaning of Life? (as told by Tara)

We are often told that we will never know the meaning of life. Only “Higher Beings” know why we exist, why we are placed on earth, what purpose we are serving. I believe in following His path; I believe He has a plan for me. But I also believe it’s okay to decide what the meaning of life is in our own terms. Wanna know what I think our purpose in life is? 

  • to explore
  • to be kind
  • to be fair
  • to learn
  • to experience
  • to admit oblivion 
  • to submit ourselves
  • to cry
  • to smile
  • to laugh
  • to deny
  • to grow
  • to observe
  • to play
  • to love
  • to try to understand
  • to challenge ourselves
  • to have passion
  • to travel
  • to be spontaneous 
  • to drink coffee and tea
  • to be an individual
  • to rebel
  • to obey too
  • to eat delicious food
  • to tell and share
  • to listen
  • to try
  • to live

Why am I not allowed to know what my purpose in life is? This is it. I’m here to live it. Fight with me, or don’t, but this is the statement I am making:

We don’t have to wait to be told the meaning of our lives. We can live life by following our own definition of it.

Be free to think on your own, ladies and gents. Find your purpose and live it the way you want. 

Bye, Adios, Ciao, Au Revoir, Adieu, Arrivederci, Auf Wiedersehen and Farewell.. live well!

Dear Abby,

DEAR ABBY – THE PURGED WORD

http://thepurgedword.tumblr.com/ask

Hey guys. This is awesome. Thanks to everyone who posted questions to the link above. The first day went really well. Below are the Dear Abby questions and responses. Let me know what you think. Keep continuing to post on my ask page. Y’all are awesome.

***If you feel like you want to view a more immediate response, please check this page http://thepurgedword.tumblr.com (its the same page but without the /ask). I will try to respond as quickly as I can. At the end of each week I will take all the questions and responses and pile them together and post it here! Thanks for being patient.***  


September 4, 2014 — The new batch of questions slowly trickle in.

 

Dear Abby,

How can I approach someone with whom I share a literal distance barrier? How can I effectively bridge the gap and present myself?

Dear DistanceDistressed,

If you are attempting to capture the attention of a potential significant other, the challenge can be more difficult when you are unable to have face-to-face conversation. However, that is not to say it cannot be done. First, you should probably find some type of bond or similar interest you have in common with that person and attempt to expand off of that. For instance, maybe you have the same major and were curious how they got that intern… that you heard about from a friend, of course. Just to give a basic scenario. Whatever the case is, you must be the one to start the effort if you feel inclined to let them know how you feel. After the initial connection, take a step further and keeping talking and showing off your true personality and more getting to know them and then eventually try to occasionally meet with your “crush” for lack of a better word; if the opportunity arises. Until then make sure you are always on their radar. I am sure you can use your imagination and be creative enough to figure out small ways to do that. Just remember, don’t be afraid to branch out of your comfort zones. If you want to make something happen… go out and work for it.

Good Luck!

Love, Abby

June 13, 2014 –I apologize. Most of these posts are from early May to recent. I caught up on my tumblr, but I just now got to adding them to this wordpress. Enjoy. Don’t be scared to ask more! 

Dear Abby,

I am a freshman in college and have a boyfriend that I adore and love very much. I am nervous if I am not “supposed” to have a boyfriend right now at this point in college. People have influenced me to think that I should not have a boyfriend and that I should see what else if out there because I am so young. What do you think…

Dear CollegeCutie,

College is a time to explore and go crazy, but that doesn’t mean you have to be single. Yeah, it’d be fun to keep your options open and see what’s out there, but if you like how things are don’t let someone persuade you into thinking that’s not okay. Just remember college is the place to make new friends and new memories… Find bridesmaids! So let yourself have the freedom to do that. Don’t be attached at the hip with your boy, but if you love him you don’t have to break up with him. It’s your life; don’t let others tell you what you should or shouldn’t do. Enjoy your college years cutie. Live it up!

Love, Abby

Dear Abby,

I’ve only taken one final but I am already over studying. How do I stay on track and focused for the rest of the week? Sincerely, expert in procrastination.

Dear Expert in Procrastination, 

You just have to take one day at a time. Designate 30 minutes of hard work on one subject and alternate to keep your brain alert. Don’t jumble it up too much though. DO NOT FORGET TO EXERCISE. I know it feels like there is no time to get in a work out when you are cramming for finals, but leave the book at home and hit the gym for 30 mins… Or even better run or walk outside to get some fresh air. One other tip I find very helpful is finding a new place to study, but not somewhere that will distract you. If you are from Fort Worth I would recommend Brewed… It’s my favorite place to study. And lastly, turn off your electronics for AT LEAST an hour worth of studying. GOOD LUCK!

Love, Abby

Dear Abby,

I am not the biggest of my friend’s boyfriend. I fear that he is subconsciously making her do things she does not want to do. How can I help her without losing her more to her boyfriend?

Dear BoyfriendBan,

Instead of calling her out for complying with her boyfriend’s wants. Ask her what her wants are without her boyfriend’s opinion. You have to help her see the problem herself without directly telling her to look at it from your view. In the meantime, invite her to do fun things with you all the time and she will cherish those moments and it may even open up her eyes to help her use her OWN choices on what she wants to do. Try not to attack the bad boyfriend, attack the problem. Good luck!

Love, Abby
P.S. If this didn’t make sense ask again in a week. Finals are kicking my butt and Abby isn’t at her prime currently.

Dear Abby,

When is the honeymoon stage in a relationship over?

 Dear Honeymooner,

The honeymoon phase is over after the first 3 big fights. Just kidding! I think it’s something you and your partner will figure out as time goes on. I can’t say when it will be in your relationship or anyone else’s either; but give your relationship the time to have it’s ups and downs and I think you’ll have a better understanding of what I’m trying to say. Happy honeymooning ;)!
Love, Abby


April 19, 2014

Dear Abby,

How long should you wait to say I love you in a relationship?

Dear LostLover,

The big three words are rarely ever planned. In most cases “i love you’ naturally slips out, whether it means to or not. Make sure than when you do say it that you mean it and that it is not forced. Don’t be caught up in the honeymoon-dating phase and jump the gun. Wait long enough to see if it is love versus infatuation. Infatuation is finding your lover to be flawless while love is knowing your lover is flawed and loving him/her anyway. Choose wisely, not timely.

Love, Abby 


 

April 17, 2014

Dear Abby,

Last night my boyfriend and I had plans to hang out, but around 11 he told me he was too tired to hang out. He always does this. What can I do? I don’t want to sound like a needy girlfriend. Please help!

Dear LonelyGirlfriend

It is hard to not seem clingy when all you want is to hang out with your boyfriend whenever you have free time. Sometimes boys don’t get that you just want their undivided attention for a while. Remind your boyfriend that you need some TLC, but give him space to do his own thing every once in a while. Make it clear that he doesn’t always have to say yes when you ask him to hang out and that will make him seem less flakey. You don’t want to be waiting all night for him to come over if he is going to keep pushing it off and then bail last minute. Manage your own time and don’t depend on his word if you think he is going to flake out. I hope this helps.

Love, Abby.


 

Dear Abby,

is eating a bowl of ice cream before bed every night beneficial to ones health?

Dear IceCreamFiend,

As long as it makes you happy. Being happy is always good for your health. However if you want a professional medical opinion I would ask somewhere else.

Love, Abby


Dear Abby,

What are your views on homosexuality and Christianity?

Dear CuriousChristian,

My opinion is exclusive to my faith and I am not here to advocate my reasoning. From a traditional Christian standpoint homosexuality is frowned upon. Interpret this how you will. I don’t have a particular opinion about how I feel, but this is what I believe to be what I know so far. Stay curious and ask questions before boasting about your opinion.

Love, Abby


Dear Abby,

I’m stuck in a rut. I long for “best-friend-like” friendships as well as I’m longing for guy friends. Help!

Dear FindingFriends,

Some of my very best friends are guys. I feel more comfortable telling them my secrets more so than I do tell my girl friends sometimes. To make a friend you have to be a friend. Make a long lasting relationship by committing to being the best friend you can possibly be and more than likely that friendship will succeed. Find the best of both worlds! I hope that helps!

Love, Abby


 

Dear Abby,

I long to be loved, but I am comfortable living in a simple life. Do I need to push myself out of my comfort zone to “find someone” or should I wait for “Mr. Perfect” to come to me?

Dear Mrs.Perfect,

It is always a good idea to branch out of your comfort zone and meet new people. However, don’t push yourself into a relationship that you’re not ready for. Remember though, you have many Mr. Wrongs to go through before you meet Mr. Right. As for now search for love from your friends and family and don’t be afraid to add some flavor to your life by meeting new people. Goodluck!

Love, Abby


 

Dear Abby,

What if you are trying to respect the boundaries of your married kids and never show up unannounced or uninvited (and rarely do invites come) but when they do, you show up gladly and then 5 years later they say they feel ingnored???

Dear UnrequitedInvitations,

Patience is a virtue. With time, good souls will find their way back to home and love will be returned. Don’t dwell on the could haves, you’ve done your best. If you feel like asking for invites is crossing a boundary, instead offer the invitation on your premises more frequently and the invitation will eventually become reciprocated. I know it is hard to be walking on eggshells, especially when you are trying to express love that feels unrequited. More often than not, claiming to be “ignored” is a way to seek for attention. Give it the attention it needs and be patient as things will find themselves being pieced back together. Stay strong and optimistic.

Love, Abby

Home Sweet Home

Today was the first time I called my room in my TCU dormitory home. I don’t exactly remember the sentence it was used in, but I do remember stopping and thinking wow it feels nice to be back into a place I can call home. TCU has been such a lovely place to me in the past few weeks and I have always felt that this atmosphere was exceedingly inviting and lovely in a close-knit family (or just my sorority family, love you big) type of way. I always thought of TCU as my home during my freshman year. I thought it would be the same sophomore year. But as I returned to school uninterested in what I would title it, I realized that adjusting back into a routine and undecorated room was unfulfilling. I was lacking in some aspect and I couldn’t quite pinpoint what exactly that missing puzzle piece was.Image

I was extremely close to God at that time as I was searching for some comfort and stability in which I found in Him. I am grateful that I had a permanent reminder of his presence infused into my own skin. I seek out to Him in fear, hope, praise, and gratitude. He responds slowly by offering up a token that has been incomplete in prior weeks. First, He granted me with the gift of gratefulness. I am utterly pleased with the classes I am in and the stimulating and challenges professors I have the opportunity to learn from. Thank you, baby Jesus. You rock.

Next, I was granted with the blessing of faithful friends. It bothers me to say that I wasn’t initially content with the way things were going with my friends for the first week and half of school. I love them and I just did not feel that the love was reciprocated. Well, I was not surprisingly wrong. I was quick to judge and wrongly assume that the way we express fondness and affection can be drastically different. Unexpectedly, this was the hardest blow for me to overcome. I was jealous of the tight bond I once was a part of and upon my return I felt left out, like I didn’t belong. That only caused me to retreat. Luckily, I was finding that backtracking and neglecting the problem were not going to make things better. From there on out we decided to allow each other to openly express our feelings in an all-understanding way. I appreciate that communication and I now find myself in a comfortable and harmonious relationship with the friends I can confidently call family.

So far my finalizing gift is the ability to overcome extreme worry.

Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken.

Psalm 55:22 NIV

Exactly what I needed to hear and I feel responsible for sharing it with others, aka you readers. Do not worry for He is always present and always guiding your path. Recently while just starting to read Eat Pray Love, I discovered a quote I found interesting and maybe a little abstract.

But why must everything always have a practical application? I’d been such a diligent soldier for years—working, producing, never missing a deadline, taking care of my loved ones, my gums and my credit record, voting, etc. Is this lifetime supposed to be only about duty? In this dark period of loss, did I need any justification for learning Italian other than that it was the only thing I could imagine bringing me any pleasure right now?

This popped out at me. I am not quite sure why yet, but I feel like there is more to it than what’s on the print and paper. Sometimes when you are feeling lost it is necessary to be your own devil’s advocate. Find yourself, ground yourself, and assure yourself. Life is made for you; you are not made to conform to societal pressures. You are capable of finding what makes you happy, what makes your mind climb higher than its limits, to let your words flow freely. Life is what you make of it. So incredibly cliché it almost makes me cringe. I can’t portray that in a more straightforward way. We mustn’t worry so much about what others think or what we are and are not capable of. We are capable of anything and stressing about it can only hold us back. My challenge for the week (maybe year, maybe lifetime) is to let go of the worry and let God guide me to my given path. Easier said than done, but always worth a try.

To tie things together I examine what I am blessed with here at TCU and what I look forward to receive throughout my time here. I smiled at myself when I heard the word “home” slip out of my lips today. I am content. I am finally home.

A Powerful Playlist

So my friend’s college fellowship has established a theme for their 2013-2014 academic year. It’s called Personal Spiritual Playlist, which is essentially a “playlist” (or set) of “songs” (or activities) under different “genres” (or spiritual disciplines) that bring 1. joy and 2. me closer to God. 

1. Prayer/ Worship
. Continue finding bible verses that directly affect me per each day. For instance when I am feeling alone and scared I pick up my bible and read Psalm 23. I write down a few words that remind me that God is always there for me and then I continue to write a small prayer thanking him for his guidance and asking for his forgiveness and help for the upcoming day. I have never done this before, but this past week and a half have seemed much more lovely with God by my side.


2. Service
. Similar to my friend’s service I plan to fast for one day a month. For me it is to act less selfish in life and prove my will power to be a strong believer of God. I am choosing to do this on the 13th of every month, as it has an important meaning in my life and I need God to always be with me on that day to give me strength and hope.

3. Obedience. 
I plan on keeping my friends on track with our weekly routine of going to church. I vow to be a strong believer and behave like a Christian rather than just saying that I am one.

4. Rejuvenation
. I recently have been cleared by my doctor to run. I find that running is typically one of my best stress reducers. I will encourage myself to “run it out” when I feel that I can’t handle the pressure of the world. Like my friend I too enjoy writing, whether it be for this blog or anything else really.

5. Fun
. I think this may be my hardest challenge on this playlist. I wish there was a secret recipe for fun, but because there isn’t I am deciding to make one. I’ll keep you updated when it starts looking like it is complete. Wish me luck!

6. Belief. When I find my self in times of trouble I need to remember to hold my wrist. Feel God’s presence there on that cross and remind myself that I am never alone and I can make it through whatever situation that comes my way. Believe in Him and believe in myself.

7. Heaven. I promise to be the best angel I can be. I promise to listen to and help my friends and family, be there for them through thick and thin. I hope I can go above and beyond and constantly remind them how much they mean to me.

My Kisses

I wanna kiss you like the sun kisses the ocean

Every evening filling the sky with magic

I wanna kiss you like the ocean kisses the shore

Over and over again without getting bored

I wanna kiss you like a moon kisses the night sky

Lighting up our love in the darkness

I wanna kiss you like wind in the air

Feel breathless when you are here

And I wanna kiss you and tell you, you’re mine

And I want you to hold me and tell me its fine