Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Big Hair Decision: Two More Inches and Then I'll Donate

My hair is long.

I realize long and short are relative terms but for me and my hair history, my hair is crazy pants long.  And I don't feel great about it.  

I should say that in general, I don't love very long hair on adult women.  I think it often looks like women are hanging onto younger years and once upon a time and it ages them.  So going into this, know that I am just not a big lover of very long hair.  It's not my jam.  

On top of that, I have very thin hair.  My pony tail is about as thick as that of a toddler.  My hair is also straight as a board and body-less.  I dry my hair upside down and use hair spray and round brushes and still get almost no body going on in my nest.

So long hair, in my opinion, just doesn't suit me.

However, what I see and what the world sees are different.




I get so many compliments on my hair when it's long.  And that's one of the only areas of my life that garners compliments.  So I've doubted myself a lot over the past few years when it comes to my hair.  I feel better with it shorter.  But the world responds better when it's longer.

As much as I would love to be in a place to say fuck it to society and not feel anything when a well meaning "Your hair looks so pretty!" comment floats my way...that's just not where I am mentally. Because compliments do help on those down days.  They're a boost and a comfort when you forget which way is up.

So I've gone back and forth on do I chop off this mop top sister wife hair or do I let it go a while longer?  

In the end, I know I will cut it.  If for no other reason than I just think it's annoying to have to deal with long hair.  It tangles and needs brushing more than the once a day that I prefer and always ends up in a pony tail by the end of the day.  

But something I've always wanted to do is donate my hair.  However, I've been told many times over that you can only donate non color treated hair.  And there is no way in hell I am about to go a day, let alone a year, without coloring my locks.  In fact, I care more about coloring my hair than cutting it.  All day, every day, if I was forced to pick between the two, I'd pick coloring.  

So no, not coloring my hair is just not an option.

However, after another Google search, I found out that one {maybe more, but I stopped at one} organization will take color treated hair.  The caveat is that it has to be at least 10" in length to donate.  

I do have the length but that would leave me with really really short hair.  And as much as I want it cut, I don't want it quite that short. 

So my new game plan is to grow it out another 1-2".  My hair grows fast so I estimate that takes me into January or February at the latest.  Which is perfect.

I turn 40 in February.  And currently have zero plans.  

So this is my new plan.  Deal with the stringy, long locks for another few months.  And then chop it off and start my fourth decade with a fun, fresh cut.  Plus, finally get the joy of donating to cancer patients who need wigs.

I didn't say this was an earth shaking game plan.  But it feels good to have a goal and an end date.  

If you have any short hair {it will likely be between my chin and shoulder at that point} ideas for me, please send them my way!  I'm open to anything style and color wise.  I'm pretty excited about making a fresh change in the new year for my new decade!

XOKK





Friday, December 1, 2017

Roasted Tomato Tortellini Soup. Easy and Delicious!

When I pulled out my tomato plants from the garden a few weeks ago, I also harvested a bunch of green tomatoes, hoping they would ripen in a sunny window.  But weeks later, with most of them ripe and all of them in my way, I decided to put them to use.  My very last fresh, homegrown, heirloom garden tomatoes of 2017.

As the weather is now cold and dreary, there was only one answer to the question {I posed to myself} of what to make.  

Soup.  I needed to make a big pot of something cozy.  Truly there is nothing cozier than a tomato soup in my book.  It's like a liquid hug!  And this recipe is worth pinning to make later.  

But please don't let not having fresh tomatoes stop you from making this recipe.  I made a note in Step 2 and at the bottom of what you can use instead.  I just happened to have tomatoes that needed to be used up.  There are a few ways to get the same end result though.  This soup is so delicious and comforting and simple to make!

Roasted Tomato Tortellini Soup:




Step 1: If you have fresh tomatoes on hand, roughly chop them up, as well as some onions and garlic cloves, toss them in oil, salt, and pepper and lay flat on a sheet pan.  Roast at 350 for about an hour.




Roasted goodness.  A lot of the water has evaporated and the flavors are intensified.  Those onions...they are sweet like candy.  Or...I mean, like onion candy.  My point is that they're delicious!  




Step 2: Add all those roasted veggies to your pot.  {If you're not using roasted veggies, do not fear.  Just cook down a few roughly chopped onions in the soup pot with some oil.  Add garlic for the last minute or two so it doesn't burn.  And supplement in a few cans of tomatoes.  What kind of tomatoes?  It doesn't matter because this is all getting puréed.  So whatever you have on hand or love the most will be perfect.}

Step 3: Add in a large 28 oz can of tomatoes.  I used diced.  You can use whatever you have in the pantry.  It all gets puréed at this point.  Add in 1/2 can of water if you used all canned veggies.  Or a full can of water if you roasted your tomatoes.




Step 4: After everything warms up, purée it to a silky smooth texture.  




Step 5: Add an additional can of diced tomatoes and water {I added half a can} to reach desired texture.  

I added this can after the purée because I prefer soups with chunky bits in them.  However, it should be clear that nothing is hard and fast with this recipe.  If you don't want chunks of tomatoes, be wild and add them in before you purée.  You do you, boo!




Step 6: Add in all the seasoning you love in a tomato soup.  I added generous amounts of salt, pepper, dried rosemary, dried basil, and a bit more dried onion powder.  But play with it.  I think a dash of cumin would be tasty here too.  




Step 7: Add one cup of cream {I used half and half.  You should use whatever you have on hand.  Heavy cream, milk, soy milk, etc will all work just fine.}

Step 8: Add half cup shredded parmesan cheese.  Stir in to incorporate well.  The cheese should melt into the soup.




Step 9: Add 1-2 bags of frozen {or fresh if you're feeling fancy} cheese tortellini.  Let the pot come to a simmer and all the bits warm up and flavors meld.  




I topped mine with a bit more parmesan cheese, because why the heck not?!  But it's good enough to stand alone.  

You seriously need this soup in your life and your belly!  It's delicious and comforting and fills you up.  

Pin in to save for later!  I'm telling you, this will be a favorite in your soup rotation this winter.  Baby it's cold outside....but dang that pot of soup is cozy and happy!

XOKK

**There are a few alternatives to the roasted veggies.  As noted, you can use canned tomatoes.  But you could also just as easily sub in a jar or two of you favorite tomato basil pasta sauce.  Or even use a pre-made tomato soup and just doctor it up with onions and seasoning and tortellini.  Don't feel boxed in to this recipe.  There are lots of ways to get a similar bowl of soup into your life, my friends!!  

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