Happy Birthday to Rick, Jacobus-Style!

We were in China for Rick’s birthday, and had been talking about how we wanted to celebrate for a while. As a going away gift, our friends Will and Angie Jacobus gave us “a night out Jacobus-Style” – for those of you that know them, you know what that means! For those that don’t, let’s just say it’s “go big or go home” style.

We knew Beijing would be a great place to go Jacobus-Style, and what better occasion than Rick’s birthday. I found the perfect place – a 600 year old Buddhist temple. No seriously.


It’s one of the top restaurants in Beijing and it’s in a 600 year old Buddhist temple. It’s also an art gallery. And it’s known for it’s over the top service.

I called for a reservation and told them it was Rick’s birthday. When we arrived we were greeted with two glasses of champagne and offered a private viewing of the grounds and gallery. It was beautiful! The pictures don’t begin to capture it.

We were seated in the gorgeous interior and ordered the tasting menu. Each course was French twists on traditional Asian cuisine, and all delicious!

Rick got four different birthday desserts. And his very own cheese cart. Yep – his own cheese cart!

We spent the entire night there, and didn’t even realize it was well into the morning when we were finishing up. It was such a special and incredible evening that we’ll never forget. Thank you Will and Angie for such an amazing experience!!


8 Things We Loved About China: 72 Hours in Beijing

We had no intention of going to China originally, but when we learned it was a necessary stop on our way to Mongolia, we thought we would make the best of their 72 hour visa-free transit policy. China really surprised us! We found a lot to love in just 72 hours.

  1. Did you say it’s 600 years old?!
    The U.S. has 100 year old buildings, South America has 200 year old, Europe boasts about 400 year old stuff… but China, we’re talking 600 year old buildings! And they’re beautiful and so interesting.
  2. 26 Billion People in Beijing, and it’s a super considerate, clean and organized city.
  3. Park Life.
    Parks and palaces that are beautiful and used by the people every day for singing, dancing, tai chi, playing games and just hanging out. We went to the Summer Palace and the Heaven Temple and got to experience it.P1210254
  4. Hutongs: Ancient Arteries of the City.
    These winding alleyways have ancient architecture and it’s where we got to see the real city come to life.
  5. The Great Wall.
    Our day trip out to visit it showed us the beauty of China’s countryside. What an amazing structure.
  6. Enthusiastic attire.
    People go all out dressing up in character. They really get into whatever activity they are doing, or do it just to look unique.P1210336
  7. Feng Shui design in everything.
    Whether it was a palace, a room in a restaurant, a park or a neighborhood this thoughtful design was employed. I loved the intentionality and the peaceful feeling it created.P1210165
  8. Duck.
    We had the most incredible roasted duck. The skin literally melted on your tongue as soon as it touched it.P1210263