Chop and Change?

Surely you have had that feeling, when you haven't done much to your hair for a while, bar a necessary trim, and you are just itching for a change? It's happening to me presently, however I am also extremely reluctant to cut my hair, or dye it. This makes for a very awkward situation.
The reason for my reluctance to cut my hair is simple, a few years ago (3/4 maybe), this happened:
This was around the time of Victoria Beckham's infamous 'Pob' and Alexa Chung's growing (hair) fame. However, as much as I don't dislike my hair in this photo, I did start growing it immediately and I still haven't forgotten the seemingly uphill battle, which involved purchasing cheap hair extensions and spending money on ridiculous 'hair  growing' products, to get my hair into the 'long hair' category once again (scientifically defined as 'below boob length'). So with this still fresh in my mind, even though it happened almost half a decade ago, I think it is unwise to go for the chop again. I will wait until I have at least forgotten the pain of the previous attempt.
As for the reluctance to dye my hair, I have also had some hairy (lols) situations in this area, one of which involved a home highlighting kit that gave me three bleached blond streaks in the front bits of my hair. I looked like a skunk. Don't get me wrong, I do, as I have mentioned in previous posts, dye my hair on a frequent basis, but this is with semi-permanent home dyes that never produce the desired colour and always leave me feeling a little deflated, so they barely count. I have always attempted to dye my hair the same colour as my eyes, this is probably a form of OCD, but I just thought it would be better if they matched, and it would achieve a nice warm brown colour. Yet semi-permanent home hair dyes have positives and negatives:
- They don't damage your hair
-They give your hair a silky soft shine post-dye.
-If the colour goes horribly wrong, it's okay as it only lasts 'up to 28 shampoos', or so they say, but remnants of colour always seem to be left behind.
- They are unpredictable. The colour of the models hair will rarely reflect the result on your hair.
- They ALWAYS GO RED. Well, not bright red, but in certain lights my hair has a red tint that screams out 'I'M DYED!' This is annoying.
-They go patchy. Maybe this is due to bad application (soz Mum), but they literally never achieve even colour.
For years and years I have wanted lighter hair, I always loved the way Jennifer Anniston's highlights seemed to make her skin look warm and more tanned. I wouldn't go that light but I think a few caramel highlights or something would definitely suit my skin tone. My skin tans easily, and it isn't pale but my face is definitely 'cool toned', i.e. without bronzer I look like I am about to die. Last year I actually went as far as to book an appointment for a dye but was subsequently told (when I was seated in the hairdressers and had to pay for a trim anyway) that due to the fact I had bleached the ends of my hair (one of the 'hairy' incidents, it is still haunting my ends) and dyed it, it wasn't okay to get it coloured lighter, unless I chopped the majority off. Thanks Mr. Hairdresser, that was exactly the dream deflating news I wanted to hear. 
So I am still dreaming of hair like this:
(Lily's length and colour is the dream)
But alas, I will have to live with dreary brown and continue on the search for the perfect (NONE RED!) semi permanent.

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