Monday, January 04, 2010

Eat From the Pantry Challenge!

I was interested to note that Crystal and FishMama are hosting an Eat From the Pantry Challenge! But, I hadn't really decided if I would participate or not since I noticed that our meat supply has really dwindled down.

However, when my mom mentioned it with a fun twist - I decided to go for it. To see how little I can spend on groceries this month while using as much as I can from my pantry or freezer. The fun part comes when I take some of the money I saved and get a much needed hair cut and style update.

There is a history on my hair. Hair is such an incredible challenge for me. It is hard for me to talk about, deal with or not deal with. It is just hard.

I have a lot of criteria - can't take very long to style, has to be able to withstand three small children and high humidity every day, I don't like it falling in my face, yet - I want it to look flattering and cute. I usually give up after the first two criteria and just pull it up in a pony tail.

I'll tell you a secret - I haven't gone to have my hair cut in three plus years! And, then it was too hard to style and I gave up as well. I've just been trimming myself and going with the pulled up in a pony tail look.

But, I know it is not the most flattering look on me. My friend Grace nailed it when she said - you want a style without doing anything and that is just not going to work!

Now, I'm on the hunt for some photos of styles that might work - and hoping that I can get used to something different which really might be a great style for me.

So, I'll be sharing what we eat from our pantry and how little I spend on groceries this month. Here is the breakdown of what we've done so far and I have not been to the store since January began.

Here's what we've done since January 1st:

Jan. 1: teriyaki chicken, roasted potatoes and stir fry veggies
Jan. 2: pizza
Jan. 3: fried chicken, gravy, hominy spoon bread, biscuits and green beans; apple cobbler (Sunday Dinner); supper: smoked sausage, cheese and crackers, chips, yogurt

Here's what is up for the next week
Jan. 4: scalloped potatoes and ham, applesauce, corn
Jan. 5: BBQ Chicken Sandwiches, sweet potatoes, baked beans
Jan. 6: taking my dad out to Chinese!
Jan. 7: leftovers
Jan. 8: Mexican Lasagna, chips and salsa
Jan. 9: turkey sandwiches, chips and fruit
Jan. 10: roast chicken, twice baked potatoes, salad
Jan. 11: smoked sausage, green beans and rice

Ok, tell me about your hair challenges, send me pictures of styles you think might work for me, tell me about eating from your pantry!


Ginger said...

Good to see your dad yesterday and that he can have a long visit!

Here is my 1st pantry challenge

My hair never does what I want it to. I usually end up clipping it up because I can't stand it in my face at school. I lost so much during chemo that I'm letting it grow out because it took 9 months to grow back!

Jthemilker said...

Go to Mary Kay dot com and try their virtual makeover. I found it yesterday and had so much fun. You can try new hair styles and colors. I even tried on some wedding veils just for fun. Maybe you'll find a style you like?

Wendi said...

I can relate to the hair challenge. I don't like to spend much time on my hair and have am terrible at keeping up with it. My hair is very straight and it doesn't hold a style for long. I usually wear it clipped up, but that gets old. Other then trimming my bangs myself I haven't had it cut since the beginning of the summer. This is on my list of thingsl to do. Can't wait to see what cute sytle you come up with.

Cheryl said...

I love this idea of cooking from your pantry. Sounds like a great challenge. I will have to put some thought into it and see what I can come up with.
So, you really haven't been to the store...not even for milk or eggs??? That's great if you have.
As for hair styles. You have a wonderfully shaped face and beautiful cheekbones. I think a stacked bob with a little bit of bangs would look super sweet and stylish on you. It's also very easy to take care of. I will email you some pics.

Paige said...

Well I know that my living room floor is not a salon but ahem, I did cut your hair with in the last three years :) I only wish I could magically appear there everymorning to style it for you!

Maggie, UK said...

I've had very long hair and very short hair and the easiest to style is short hair. Your hair gets more volume, more life and a little more lift with shorter layers.

When your hair is longer, you will find it takes longer to get it looking amazing. Takes 2 minutes to get it decent yes, but for amazing hair it is a long time or near impossible!

I think at the moment you are wanting too much from your hair. I recommend you keep the length, it really suits your face! But get some shorter layers chopped into it. But this might mean some "falls into your face" - but for day to day, that's what hair clips and headbands are for!

Something like this maybe with shorter layers would work wonders. Don't forget to take a selection of pictures you like to the hairdresser so he/she can see the general look you are aiming for :)

PS - go for something similar to what you have now for your first cut. In another 6 months you can go a little more daring.

Amy said...

I am such a big fan of the angled bob haircut and it has made my life infinitely easier. My hair is wavy (much like yours) and it is prone to frizz. The angled bob makes working with the back so much easier and a quick blow dry and a straightening iron pulled through it and it looks cute in minutes.

Really the key for me has been adding a straightener to my tools. I got a Clairol one with shine enhancing in it (just at Walmart) and it has made my hair look a little glossier than usual.

Of course, with a bob, you will have to have it trimmed more often, but if you can find someone to cut it for a reasonable price, it will be easy to manage, I promise!

I think you would look adorable and you could wear it wavy or straight pulled up on the sides or left down. Trendy, but classic :)

Hope that helps!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Monica,

I was looking thru some of your photos from Christmas and remembering some from previous posts, over time.

I think your hair length looks great when it brushes just at the top of your shoulders or just below. It's flattering to your facial features and youthful. Then, if I were cutting your hair, I add some layers. You could easily start the layering just below your cheek bones, or do longer layers around the bottom. THis will add shape, style, and take bulk out of your hair. If you hair is naturally straight and limp, you really won't have to do any "styling" beyond the normal blowdrying. You would have to come up with other ideas for pulling it back if it was one of those days.

Sorry to be so wordy. lol. If you go to Pioneer Woman's blog today, scroll down to yesterday's post
(1/03). Scroll again to the 12th photo. You'll see a woman in a gray sweater holding a child in a gray suit. Her haircut is kind of what I am talking about, but you can vary that by a slightly longer length and slighty longer layers.

I'd love to see what you and your hairdresser come up with. I used to be a hairdresser and love to get my haircut. :)

"Andrea L."

Unknown said...

I am doing the "Eat from the Pantry Challenge" too! I am super excited about it, because we need to clean out our pantry, and any money we save will go toward saving for a down payment on a house.
I'm sorry I can't help you out with your hair, I have enough of a challenge to just figure out how to style my own. I would love to hear what you decide to do though!

Candice said...

I hear you about the hair!! Our first child is going to be here in about 10 weeks and I have been trying SO HARD with my hair. I want it cute.... but not high maintenance AT ALL. I don't want to be THAT girl. LOL! I don't want to teach my daughter that! Unfortunately my hair is changing from semi-curly to not straight just frizzy.

So this is how I am compromising... I tell myself just ONE run through with the straightener and I am happy and go on with my day (when previously I'd get mad and go over it again and again!)

Davonne said...

You might enjoy this hair article my cousin Lisa wrote:

I wish you could go to Jim Doycheff in Columbus, Ohio. He is AMAZING!

I'm actually hoping to get in with him when I visit my mother this month, as I'm almost done losing the baby weight, and would LOVE an updated style!

Ponytails can be super cute as long as they're not slicked back (as in, no hairspray) and a few strands are left out in the front.

But, having a ponytail every day can break off and damage hair :(

A style that's long enough to tuck behind your ears may be the best option for you. Maybe a bob? One that's not too short, so the back won't need shaved (aahhh!) at all.

Please do post before and after pictures of the front and back whenever you get this done!

I hope you love your new do :)

Joy @ SAH Missionary said...

I'm excited to see your new hair! Will you do it at the end of the month?
Can't wait!

Leanne said...

yes...I'm eating from the pantry also!
I've had the same hairstyle since 1986...the classic bob...different lengths (and color, hee,hee), but the same! WheneverI try something new, I grow it out and come back to the classic. I thought your hair looked very nice in the Christmas photo!
I had an 1 1/2 inches cut off yesterday...and decided that I like it longer!! how funny!

Jennifer said...

I have long hair, and I like to keep it long so that I can pull it back during my daughter's bath time or if we're playing outside. I just got a really nice flat iron straightener for Christmas. I can't believe the difference that has made! My hair is always frizzy. The slightest bit of humidity sends it into a frizzy tizzy! So far, the iron has taken care of it. I hesitated on spending so much of my Christmas money on it, but it was 100% worthwhile! I think I've spent more than the cost of the iron on products that I hoped would do the same job!

Jenny's Vegcafe said...

I always thought your hair was so cute. I have no ideas on how to style it. In fact I'm in the same boat. I'm growing my hair out to save money and it's starting to drive me nuts. But, I hate having to spend any time on styling it too.

FishMama said...

Welcome to the challenge! I'm so glad you have something to work for, too. Excellent.

I got a new do back in November... a bob with a sidebang. I have the same criteria as you, but I really like it. As long as I do a little gel each morning to keep the bangs to the side, it works.

Amy @ Hope Is the Word said...

I've always liked your hair, Carrie--I admire someone who can look so cute without being "made up." (I hope you take that as a compliment--that's what I mean it as!!!)

My hair has gotten shorter the older I've gotten, but I've finally found a look I (usually) like--an angled bob, like someone else suggested. Mine isn't extreme, but I do have long bangs, so I can pull them back when necessary.

Can't wait to see what you decide!

angie said...

My parents were visiting until today, so I am comtemplating the pantry challenge. I think I will limit grocery pruchases to milk, OJ, produce, and maybe meat. So, I guess I will buy perishables, but not items that are stored in the pantry.
I tried a shorter hair style at the end of Sept. Many people complimented me on it, but I felt less feminine. So I am letting it grow out. In the meantime I need to get my bangs cut. I am not confident enough to cut my own. I've always thought your hair looked nice in pics.

Dayna (Spear) Guenther said...

I think your hair looks cute in your profile pic... I never would have guessed you had an issue with styling your hair! I feel the same as you--minus the small children. I always want a style that I have to do nothing with, but still look cute and stylish! Glad to know I'm not the only one! (I'm blessed to have naturally curly hair, which helps when it's cut properly.)

I love the idea of eating from the pantry and freezer... I need to do this, especially after spending a little extra on groceries during Christmas! Thanks for the encouragement!

Dayna (Spear) Guenther said...

Monica, you might enjoy this for your hairstyle choice:

being molded said...

Monica, I completely understand about hair issues. I cut mine once a year,when it looks totally dry and yucky. It's all one length,no bangs and during the day I pull the sides up in a clip. I also hate it falling in my face and I'm not a morning person so it has to be quick and easy for me.
Can't wait to see your new look.

Anonymous said...

We have planned to do a month (or two) if we can stretch it of pantry and freezer cooking. I have a goal of $10 per week spending on things that we may need. We'll see how it goes~ but any savings will be wonderful. ~lisa

Anonymous said...

uh! I totally agree about the hair! I don't know what kind of hair you have (curly, wavy, straight, etc.)but for me with naturally curly hair...I try to at least keep my style appropriate for the season. This might confuse some people but I cut my hair short in the winter, so it's fast to blow dry...and by summer it has grown long again and I wear it curly most often with some gel in it. I part it or pin it up so that it stays out of my face. I tend to spend no more than 10-15 minutes on fixing my hair at any given time. I just had a baby so I'm glad I don't have to fuss at it any longer than that! So maybe you could consider what would be easiest for what season. :) I only cut my hair once a year btw... so don't feel too bad about your secret!

Teresa said...

I am also doing the Pantry Challenge. Between a bountiful garden and freezing back meals from batch cooking - my freezers and pantry are in desperate need of reduction. I may even stretch it out another month.

Can't help much with your hair. I am in a love hate relationship with mine. I like it long, but get in a rut. Now that it is shorter, I have a hard time finding an easy care style. Good luck and I am anxious to see your new style!