Two weeks ago, I got LASIK. Now, I feel like it’s my duty to share what I found out about the procedure (versus my prior misconceptions) and why I chose to have it done. Most importantly, why it was the best decision I’ve ever made.

I’ve had glasses since I was eight years old. Some really cute pinkish-purple ones to be exact. I got contacts when I started 6th grade and my prescription went up and up until it stopped at 5.5, which is pretty darn high. Last year my eye doc told me I should consider LASIK when I turned 25 since my prescription hadn’t changed. I had no clue if I’d actually go through with it because it sounded pretty scary and expensive..but I was very curious.

I had a LOT of questions going into the free consultation, namely “can I go blind”? Apparently they get that a lot. And no, you can’t go blind.

There are some minor complications that can happen, like some people don’t reach perfect 20/20 vision, some people see halos around lights and others have dry eyes, but both of those go away after a couple months. I can definitely live with that.

The Process

This is essentially how the surgery works:

  • It takes literally 10 minutes. Plus, the time you’re sitting waiting for the Valium to kick in.
  • They use a laser to cut a flap in the top of your cornea. I know I know, “flap”. Yuck. But it doesn’t hurt at all and your eyes just get blurry.
  • Once the “flap” is pulled back, they use the laser to skim the top layer off and even out the surface, which is apparently why you can’t see clearly.

After they’re done, you pop a Xanax and pass out at home wearing plastic goggles. Not surprisingly, I slept for 14 hours, minus a one hour break where I tried to be a real person on a Friday night and hang out in the living room. It was way too bright even in a dark room (light sensitivity is crazy right after), I was still super out of it, and I felt like I had sand in my eyes (also normal) so I gave up and went back to bed.

The next day I woke up with 20/20 vision and felt like a champ. And my eyes are still improving!

How Much Is It?

As far as cost, it depends on your prescription and what you’re a candidate for since there are 3 different types. At the place I went at least, they range from $1700-2900. Not bad for perfect vision when you think about the cost of contacts & glasses over the years!

One other thing to clear up – I thought you had to get it done every 10 years. Apparently only 4% of people’s eyes change within 10 years without it being due to getting older and needing reading glasses, since that’s unavoidable.

So there you have it. I can already tell my quality of life is going to be that much better moving forward. Heck, I can even open my eyes under water now!




Summer Engagement Party Details

I’m all about DIY, so when my now-fiance proposed at the beginning of February and proceeded to tell me he wanted to have our friends over for a celebration the following weekend, I got straight to picking out some fun things to make.

I am bright-color obsessed and wanted to pick out a few that I know we won’t use for the wedding, but also didn’t want it to look like a baby shower. Blue, hot pink and yellow with a pop of copper it is!

Here are some of the details from the party:

Pomelo Cocktails

Grapefruit juice, club soda, sugar, & lime juice in a salt rim glass, topped with a lime.


Anti-Pasti Skewers

Kalamata olives, green olives, peppercini, grape tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, & sausages.


Copper Vases & Wild Flowers

DIY tutorial here.


Hanging Pom Poms

DIY tutorial here.




Quick Asian Noodle Salad



  1. Asian noodles
  2. Purple cabbage
  3. Green onion
  4. Baby corn
  5. Shredded carrots
  6. Sesame seeds
  7. Soy sauce
  8. Peanut sauce
  9. Siracha


  1. Chop up cabbage, green onion & baby corn.
  2. Cook Asian noodles and drain. Pit in a large mixing bowl.
  3. Throw in chopped veggies, a couple handfuls or shredded carrots and sesame seeds.
  4. Stir in a few spoonfuls of peanut sauce and a long drizzle of soy sauce.
  5. Serve and drizzle Siracha on top.




Orange County Wedding Venue Breakdown

Let me first just say that I originally thought I could plan a wedding for under $10k. Psh, yeah right. What I quickly learned is that most venues charge over $10K just for the venue, rentals, food & bar. The ones that don’t still charge a venue, table & chairs rental fee of about $5,000 or more. Swallowing my pride thinking that I can do anything DIY for cheap, we charged ahead, looking for the best bang for our buck, while still nailing most of our wishlist.

Our wishlist: outdoor ceremony & reception with lots of trees & bistro lights, 6+ hours of event time, and hopefully a food truck and/or BYOB option.

Surprisingly, this mythical spot is extremely difficult to find. Many only have the reception inside, others only allow you to have the venue for 5 hours of event time, most don’t allow outside catering, and very few allow BYOB.

Anyway, before checking out a few wedding venue locations in Orange County, I spent a fair amount of time researching and price checking quite a few venues in the area. Since we ultimately decided to hold the wedding in my parent’s backyard in Sacramento (and are able to cross off all of our wishlist items), I thought I’d put my extensive research to use with a blog solely about venues in OC.

So here it is all laid out in what I hope is a helpful fashion. Everything’s based on Saturday pricing in peak season, so it could change based on your preferences. I based the total estimate on 150 people (when it’s a per person situation), 4 hours bar service and choosing the lowest cost options for comparison (no appetizers included).

Sherman Library and Gardens in Corona Del Mar

Estimate: $4,000

  • Price breakdown: $2,000 + $2,000 membership fee.
  • Includes: Venue for 6 hours.
  • Notes: Must used their approved caterer.

French Estate in Orange


  • Includes: venue for 6 hours, tables & chairs, and shuttle service.
  • Space: Outdoor ceremony & reception in the backyard of a large home.
  • Notes: BYO everything. Limited amount of weddings per year.

Wilcox Manor in Tustin


  • Includes: Venue, rentals & lighting.
  • Space: Outdoor ceremony & reception in the backyard of a large home.
  • Notes: BYO everything.

Credit: Wilcox Manor


Griffith House in Anaheim

Estimate: $5,000

  • Price breakdown: $3,500 + $10/pp for rentals and coordinator.
  • Includes: Venue, rentals & coordination services.
  • Space: Outdoor lawn area for ceremony & reception outside of a cottage style home/church.
  • Notes: BYO everything. Great value, but the surrounding neighborhood is a bit sketchy and the lawn is right next to a very busy street.

Eureka Building in Irvine

 Estimate: $5,350

  • Price breakdown: $2,800 venue + $12 pp for rentals + $5 pp for table settings.
  • Includes: Venue & rentals.
  • Space: Outdoor ceremony & reception under a trellis.
  • Notes: BYO everything.

Red Horse Barn in Huntington Beach

Estimate: $5,500

  • Includes: Venue only, but they offer all-inclusive packages as well.
  • Space: Outdoor ceremony & reception.
  • Notes: Must use approved DJ and bartender.

Serra Plaza in San Juan Capistrano

Estimate: $7,000+

  • Price breakdown: $7,000
  • Includes: Venue for 5 hours, tables & chairs for 200, and vintage furniture.
  • Space: Outdoor ceremony & reception in a pretty courtyard.
  • Notes: Must use one of their preferred caterers for food and alcohol.

Villa Del Sol in Fullerton

Estimate: $7025

  • Price breakdown:  $5225 venue + $12 pp rentals
  • Includes: Full use of Courtyard and Terrace, Villa Suite and valet parking/security.
  • Space:
  • Notes: Event time frame is 5 pm – midnight and catering required from one of 4 onsite restaurants.

Credit: Villa Del Sol

Wedgewood San Clemente

Estimate: $7,350+

  • Price breakdown: $49 pp for crystal package.
  • Includes: venue, dinner, DJ, invites, champagne toast and rentals.
  • Space: Outdoor ceremony on golf course; Indoor reception with cocktail hour on outdoor deck.

Parker Ranch in Trabuco Canyon

Dream outdoor venue right here, but don’t bother looking into it because they are currently only renting the space out to family and friends.

University Club in Irvine


  • Price breakdown: $4,000 outdoor reception + $1250 outdoor ceremony + $28 pp for dinner
  • Includes: venue for 5 hours & food
  • Space: Outdoor and indoor options.
  • Notes: Currently closed for renovations.

Long Beach Museum of Arts

Estimate: $13,800+

  • Price breakdown: $500 ceremony site + $4,000 reception site + $9,300 buffet & standard bar.
  • Includes: Venue, rentals, food & bar, heaters, coordination.
  • Space: Outdoor ceremony and reception with an ocean view.
  • Notes: Includes 5.5 hours event time.

Rancho Las Lomas

Estimate: $18,250+

  • Price breakdown:  $8,500 rental + $1500 lighting + $34 pp Silver menu + 21 pp beer & wine bar.
  • Includes: venue, rentals, lighting, catering & bar.
  • Space: Multiple outdoor and indoor ceremony/reception spots.
  • Notes: This place is insanely gorgeous and has plenty of options for where you want your reception/ceremony to be.

Colony House in Anaheim

Estimate: $16,500+

  • Price breakdown: $6,500 + $10,000 food minimum
  • Includes: venue, security, standard lighting, and tables & chairs for 250
  • Space: Indoor ceremony & reception in a brick/modern/industrial area.
  • Notes: Food, beverages and rentals must go through 24 Carrots Catering (lowest cost: $30 pp for food; $18 pp beer & wine).
colony house

Credit: Wedding Bee

Franciscan Gardens in San Juan Capistrano

Estimate: $17,500+

  • Price breakdown: $7,500 rental; $10,000 food minumum.
  • Includes: venue, chairs & tables, security, & basic bistro lighting.
  • Space: Outdoor ceremony & reception. They are currently renovating a very cool indoor brick space to use for either reception or ceremony.
  • Notes: Food, beverages and rentals must go through 24 Carrots Catering (lowest cost: $30 pp for food; $18 pp beer & wine). Space available until midnight for up to 200 people.

Mount Palomar Winery in Temecula

Estimate: $18,000+

  • Price breakdown: $120 pp
  • Includes: venue for 5 hours, food & bar, and rentals

Strawberry Farms Golf Club in Irvine

Estimate: $20,250+

  • Price breakdown: $1500 ceremony site + $1500 terrace site for cocktails + $92 pp dinner (minimum $12k) + $23 pp beer & wine bar.
  • Includes: Barn, rentals, dance floor, cake cutting.
  • Space: Garden ceremony and reception in Big Red Barn for up to 250.

Bella Gardens Estates in Murrieta

Estimate: $22,249

  • Price breakdown: $18,999 for 100 guests plus $65 pp over 100 guests
  • Includes: 3 days/2 nights stay for 10-14 people, all rentals, coordination, 2 photographers, buffet + appetizers, servers, and DJ. They have a couple other smaller packages available as well starting at $8,000.
  • Space: Outdoor ceremony & reception at a large estate.
  • Notes: Probably the best all-inclusive deal you can find in the area.

Bella Collina Golf Course in San Juan Capistrano

Estimate: $22,000+

  • Price breakdown: $5,700 + $59 pp dinner/appetizers + $14 pp first hour bar / $8 pp each hour after
  • Includes: venue, tables & chairs, food & bar
  • Space: Outdoor ceremony and indoor reception.
  • Notes: Great views from inside and two large patios areas during cocktail hour & reception. The chairs provided aren’t my style so we would’ve had to rent others.

Galway Downs in Temecula

Estimate: $24,500+

  • Price breakdown: $139 pp for classic package + $25 pp for beer & wine bar
  • Includes: venue, food, coordination, DJ, and rentals

The Ranch at Laguna Beach

Estimate: $25,000+

  • Price breakdown: $25,00
  • Space: Various spots for ceremony & reception


Happy hunting!