Birthday – Seeing and Doing, Eating, Feeling

This will be a birthday that I will always remember. My birthday was December 7th, so we celebrated my birthday during our last days in Bali. It was full of surprises, relaxation, and love from near and far. A bonus to my birthday this year was being able to celebrate during our time, and then feeling like I got a whole other birthday when it was December 7th back in the states.

Seeing and Doing
The first surprise came the day before my birthday in the form of our next accommodation. Jared had kept it a secret but started reveling some information the closer it got. I knew we would be staying in Nusa Dua and that it was pretty close to The Westin. On the day of December 6th, we strapped on our packs and walked about 10 minutes down the road. When we arrived at Awarta Nusa Dua Luxury Villas and Spa, I knew we were in for something amazing. We were greeted with some delicious infused water and then escorted to our VILLA; ours being the Orchid Villa!!


They led us to our outdoor living room and gave us a customary foot washing before leaving us to explore our new home. Jared said he wasn’t exactly sure what he was getting so we both wandered around in amazement, our jaws dropping to the floor at every new discovery. We had our own private pool with a waterfall and lounge chairs, poolside cabana, outdoor living area, indoor living area, huge bedroom, huge bathroom, bathtub room, two indoor bathrooms, two indoor showers, and two outdoor showers. Everything was beautiful and soft and smelled good and perfect. After our explorations, we swam, lounged, and enjoyed our private space before going to dinner. After dinner, we came back and did the same thing.

The morning of my birthday we went for breakfast early so we could get back and enjoy some more of our villa. A little after noon, we decided we would go check out the Beach Club. We got to Nikki Beach Club, walked the beach, went to the pool and each had a cocktail with a fun name; I think mine was a Bahama Mama. After we finished our drinks we decided if we were just going to be by the pool, we should get back to our own private pool.


When we got back, I had another surprise: a rose pedal bath. It was so beautiful and it smelled amazing. I have never had a bath like this before. I opened up the window to feel closer to nature and got in to soak. It was incredibly relaxing and a very enjoyable experience. (However, I just couldn’t help but hope that all those flowers didn’t die just for me, but I made sure to completely enjoy and appreciate them.)


After the soak, it was time to start getting ready for dinner which was another surprise. At 19:00, Stephan, our “Butler”, came to escort us to dinner. I was preoccupied on our walk putting on my lipgloss and trying to make sure my hair looked okay that I didn’t really notice where we were going. When I look up, I see an aisle made of red and pink flower pedals and candles leading to a secluded table outside in front of the beautiful waterfall. The whole dinner experience was very special and romantic.

The next morning we had breakfast delivered to our room since we had to leave pretty early for the airport. Then they had to drag us out of our villa by our ankles because we refused to leave. Just Kidding. But it was hard to say goodbye, not just to the villa, but to Bali. We had an unforgettable time on this amazing island.

Our first night’s dinner was at Ru Yi, the authentic Chinese Restaurant within the Resort. We both started with soup; I had the herbal chicken soup, and Jared had the corn soup. When we tasted each soup, we knew this meal was going to take our taste buds to a whole new level. Both of our soups were jam-packed with flavors and I think we could have each eaten a whole basin full of these soups. For our main course, we had a 500 gram Hong Kong style Garoupa fish, crispy duck in a homemade plum sauce, and pork/prawn friend trice. The meal was incredible. The meats were juicy and tender, and like the soup, packed with flavors. The duck skin was rich and crispy. We ended our meal with the fish cheeks, a delicate and delicious bite. We were beyond satisfied and forgot to leave room for desert.

Breakfast the next morning was set up similar to our hotel in Ubud, with different types of breakfasts. There was the English breakfast, a Chinese inspired breakfast, a lifestyle/health breakfast, the American breakfast, ect. I have to admit that I splurged this day and got the American Breakfast with scrabbled eggs and pork bacon along with cereal, fresh fruit, pastries, juice, tea, toast, and a Balinese dessert. The eggs were smooth and buttery, the bacon was crispy and the juice was fresh. It was an amazing birthday breakfast and filling enough to not have to eat again until dinner.



If we were home, I would prefer Jared’s cooking over any restaurant, but since we are 10,000 miles away, he found the next best thing. I knew he had planned something special, but I could have never imagined this dinner. Each course, which there were like seven, was unique and catered for us (me). Jared and the chef completely out did themselves. We started the meal by popping a bottle of champagne. I will outline the courses that we had but won’t go into much detail about them; just know they were mouth-watering deliciousness. First, a fried ball with white fish and something else in the middle. Next, a very refreshing tuna tartar, followed by head-on prawns. At this time, we opened a bottle of red wine. We had salmon with creamy mashed potatoes and then…ahhhhhhh, perfectly cooked (like the way Jared would do it at home) beef tenderloin topped with foie gras and potatoes that were like a hybrid of french fries and hash browns, so basically heaven on a plate. If this is sounding like a lot of food, it was. By this time, I was like 95% full and I knew there was still dessert which was chocolate mousse, mandarin ice cream with a raspberry jam reduction and crushed nuts. After finishing that, I was entering a food comatose when they brought out a pice of birthday cake, chocolate covered strawberries, cookies and some chocolate balls and sang a lovely rendition of Happy Birthday. It was all too much! Everyone was so kind, genuine and happy. We ate a couple bites and then took the rest back to our villa with the remaining half bottle of wine.


Our last breakfast we both chose the Life Style/Healthy breakfast which was still pretty expansive: Egg white omelette with spinach and tomato, fresh fruit, yogurt with fruit, toast, pastries, and fresh juice. It was delivered to us and unfortunately because of some rain, we had to enjoy it inside.


Overall, my birthday eating feasting was a complete success.

This birthday like many other birthdays came with many feelings and emotions. I usually don’t like to put a huge emphasis on my birthday but it is a time when you can reflect on the last year/s, appreciate the love and people in your life, and just feel special.

Overall I felt completely spoiled on my birthday. Since we are traveling, I knew this birthday would be a little bit different but celebrating in Bali was truly unique. Jared went above and beyond any expectations I could have imagined to make it unforgettable. I enjoyed getting messages from close and distant friends, whether by proximity or time. I loved being able to FaceTime with my parents and best friends. I was in happiness tears when I received Happy Birthday videos from the kids at Clubhouse (Thank you, Becky!!! That meant so much to me). I was completely pampered to the point of relaxation bliss, and fed like a hungry queen. This was in no means a birthday I would need or want to have every year, but man, it was great.

I also have a great sense of appreciation and gratitude for all aspects of my life; the people, the experiences, and the things. This isn’t a feeling that I needed to travel half way around the world to have, but it amplifies it. Just having these opportunities to travel make me feel very fortune. And then you add the extras, like this amazing birthday, and I feel blessed beyond what my words could describe. I feel lucky to have all of you reading this, who care about me enough to keep up with my journey. A serious THANK YOU to all of you who make me feel so special!

I was also very thankful that the weather was cooperative. Like i’ve mentioned in other posts, it is rainy season and I would say it rains two out of every three days, sometimes for a 5-10 minute shower and sometimes it lasts for hours. We had the perfect weather to be able to enjoy the specialty of having the villa!

Finally I felt age. I don’t know if this is the perfect way to say it, maybe it’s a feeling of “not-age”, like I’m not 23 or 24 or 25…or 26 or 27 or 28. It’s now my last year in my 20s. I don’t feel “old” or scarred of 30 or anything like that; it’s actually the opposite. I still feel young, like I have a lot of life to figure out and time to do that, but knowing that time is not unlimited. I feel like I have aged (in a positive way) when I reflect on how I have grown as a whole person in the last years: physically, mentally, and emotionally, ect.

Anywayz, gone is 28, cheers to 29 and beyond!

Kathryn ❤️

7 thoughts on “Birthday – Seeing and Doing, Eating, Feeling

  1. I really enjoyed reading this… I like the ’emotional approach’ that you have with birthdays – I totally relate, I’m nearing the 30 mark and sometimes I do feel old but sometimes, not at all! Sounds like a great time – happy belated birthday, as it is!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Rebecca Ganser

    Katie, I absolutley love following your posts!!! You are so welcome for the birthday wishes from the kiddos!!! They talk about you still on the regular and so do the parents. We all miss you!! Gavin Sherman and his mom came in to vusit the other day and were sad not to see you, but so excited for your journey as we all are!!!!!! Have fun on your next set if adventures that are awaiting you in Malaysia!!!!!


  3. Laurie lunde

    Definitely memories being made! I am glad you had an amazing birthday! I am proud of my son Jared for making it special and romantic! He did not get that from his father lol! Just some of many lifetime memories being made on this journey you two are on! Love you both! Take care and be safe! Love, Laurie


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