Chocolate Swirl Pumpkin Bundt Cake by Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven



Chocolate Swirl Pumpkin Bundt Cake





Holidays or any day for that matter is a time for gratitude.  Making family and friends happy with the gift of baked goods, pies, cookies, and more creates good times and memories.  Surrounding ourselves with people that like to laugh, are genuine, and enjoy food too is always a good thing.  Certainly, chocolate cake is a genuine gift of cookery.

Chocolate Swirl Pumpkin Bundt Cake Topped with Ganache.  The recipe includes the best quality ingredients and the cake is crafted using time-tested techniques.  Quality ingredients ensure the best taste and respect for the gift receiver.  Process also matters.  Each cake is carefully created to ensure it is made well and tastes delectable.  The cake batter is gently stirred and transferred into the cake pan, while layers of chocolate streusel are thoughtfully arranged.  At the end, the cake is baked and watched with care.  This is definitely one for the chocolate lovers.





As Marion Cunningham, author of The Fannie Farmer Cookbook, declared, the art and science of cookery is a creative endeavor.  Cakes or other goods for family and friends is a fun and excellent way to demonstrate gratitude.  

Thank you to all those that have been loyal supporters and fans.  Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven liberates taste in cookery, culture, and community, provides gourmet goods made with organic ingredients, inspired by the culinary worlds of California, Central, and South America, and engages in a community of customers and readers with lifestyle content, reviews, and expertise.

How do you liberate food and taste in your everyday?  Location…follow…Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven offers gourmet morsels made with high standards.  Quality, respect for local, fresh, and organic ingredients is the recipe for success.  Artisanal goods are lightly sweetened, using natural ingredients and thoughtfully created.






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Invest In, Do Not Toss Out, Wrought Iron


Invest In, Do Not Toss Out, Wrought Iron





You’ve discovered a wrought iron planter perfect for your home.  Maybe this is an item a neighbor wants to give to a new home, something found curbside, or something from a flea market.  You can imagine the place for it in your home.  Yet, reality sets in knowing this treasure is also a project.  

The larger the wrought iron piece in need of refurbishing the more time it will take to complete.  Wrought iron planters, chairs, tables, or railings with intricate details will require patience to remove rust, sand, and paint.  Something to keep in mind prior to taking on the project.  Research and keen observation is key.  If the wrought iron is in good to great condition, has good bones, then the time and energy will probably be worth it.  If the piece may have historic value, consult a professional before you act.




A passion or interest in refurbishing or upcycling discarded items into something useful can also be necessary.  Perhaps this is your own personal hobby, an interest inherited from family members such as your parents or an aunt, or sparked for some other reason.  Embarking on refurbishing and restoring items may also be an activity your are exploring to see if it is something you wish to do more often.  In any case, upcycling can be fun, pleasurable, and an affordable way to furniture your home and garden.




If hunting for wrought iron at flea markets, yard sales, or thrift stores, keep in mind a few guidelines.  There is a plethora of other people in search of items too.  Going early to a flea market or store can mean you find the item before someone else does.  Bring a flashlight to inspect items before the sun is up and to look into boxes or under tables.  Cash or digital payment can give you the upper hand when negotiating, as opposed to paying with a check.  Closely inspect items, look for tags or stickers indicating the name of the manufacturer, and ask questions of the seller.  

Safety

Safety must also be on mind when refurbishing wrought iron or other items.  Wear a long-sleeved shirt.  Use safety glasses to protect your eyes.  Wear a mask to cover your nose and mouth.  Work in a well-ventilated room or outdoors.  Keep children and animals at a distance.  

Cleaning

Cleaning the item well is also important.  Grime and dirt can build up and will not allow paint to adhere.  Use a rag and/or sponge with soap and warm water.  A nylon-bristled scrub brush and a toothbrush are also effective if there are intricate details, narrow spaces, carvings, or reliefs to clean.  Dry with a clean towel.

Sanding

Then use fine steel wool (#0000 steel wool) to remove additional buildup and dirt that the soap and water did not remove.  This process may take some time and effort.  Yet, clean wrought iron will be the best foundation for painting.  Taking care to clean the item well will produce a professional result in the end.




Note:  sandblasting can pit and damage metal.  If the item is heavily rusted and you are unsure of how to remove the rust, then consult a professional.  If the wrought iron is badly pitted or damaged, consider using auto body filler to fill dents and some holes.  If the piece is heavily damaged or missing parts, then a professional can be hired to solder or weld on new brackets, flanges, hooks, et cetera.




Painting

Prime the wrought iron before painting.  Spray a light coating of primer, undercoat, on the item.  Then give time to fully dry.  Primers are designed to protect metal against corrosion and ensure a smooth surface for painting.  A primer is not the same as the top coat paint.  

Research and consider various colors of paint for the wrought iron.  Wrought iron can become pitted and rusty over years because of the elements.  Beware this may not be the first and only time you refurbish the piece over time.  Although the look and architecture of wrought iron can be worth it.  A personal touch with a new color of paint, traditional or contemporary colors is up to you.  Larger pieces of wrought iron, such as a table, often look best with neutral or muted colors.  Smaller pieces, such as a small planter, can handle bold colors.  The style or era from which the piece originates can also dictate the best color.  Test paint colors on small areas of the wrought iron to get a better idea of which color to choose.  Also, observe how each possible paint color looks over the day in various lighting.  Lastly, apply the paint in thin layers to avoid paint bubbles or uneven areas.


Before


After


Painting Tip:  Prepare the area with a large drop cloth.  Wear plastic gloves.  Carefully read the directions on the paint can.




Store your wrought iron pieces indoors during the winter.  This will lengthen the life of the piece and make your hard work worth it.  Wrought iron is an investment, yet giving something life and developing your own skills along the way is all part of the homeownership journey.

  



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Credit:  pexels.com 

Workout with Celebrity Trainer Loui Pacheco



Workout with Celebrity Trainer Loui Pacheco





Eating a box of apple fritter doughnuts topped with cream cheese frosting and pink sprinkles or working out on a Sunday morning.  Such a dilemma.  Celebrity trainer Loui Pacheco certainly is an expert at making a workout appealing.  His positive feedback, variety within his routine, and confidence was outstanding to see at a recent fitness event benefiting people affected by Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico.

DJ KRZA kept the rhythm going as Pacheco lead participants through a variety of exercises, including squat pulses, lunges, step down and cross back moves, and abdominal crunches.  This routine was followed by a 20 minute meditation yoga.  The mix of exercises and challenging steps was excellent to get the heart rate up.  Also, including the mind-body-spirit connection through yoga gave participants a thorough workout.





We all have goals related to physical health and wellness.  Among these could be to improve body image, avoid following unhealthy eating behaviors, making healthy food choices, and being physically active every day.  Pacheco’s fusion of fitness and love of music makes working out engaging and supports people on the path to healthy choices and looking great.




Starting each day with a healthy perspective enables us to face challenges and be sure in the choices we make when we are eating alone, with friends, coworkers, or family.  Over time this mental lifting of weights, making good steps, goes a long way in the ability to have a fit body.  Including friends and family that share an interest in fitness is beneficial, as the synergy created will keep each person in various activities and encouraged to exercise.  That is why a trainer, such as Loui Pacheco, can be beneficial and an investment in long-term health and wellness.






Overall, a wonderful event to promote fitness and to support Puerto Rico after the devastation from the violent storm.  Also deserving recognition is lululemon for providing the event space.  Alchemy Cafe for providing delicious fresh squeezed orange juice at the after party, champagne, and superfood popcorn—made with organic popcorn, spirulina, cayenne, turmeric, himalayan salt, paprika, cumin, nutritional yeast, and coconut oil.  Kona Deep for providing water.  Skin Laundry representatives on hand for treatments.  The restaurant Otium and Sweet House for donating gift certificates for the benefit raffle.





100% of the proceeds were donated by Pacheco to the Ricky Martin Foundation benefitting Puerto Rico as they continue to recover from the effects of Hurricane Maria.

Visit Pacheco's website at www.louipacheco.com.




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Fashion Portfolio: Power Suit Looks to Wear for Upscale Dining and Events by Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven



Fashion Portfolio:  Power Suit Looks to Wear for Upscale Dining and Events





In life we may not become famous, infamous, or blockbusters. We do; however, have the power to become something more than those labels.  It is our savvy and confidence that allows us to rise above and experience living life with good taste.  Our travels, life experiences, and dreams are snapshots on the runway of our lives.  There is no better place than the now to make the best strides down that runway.   This is your epic, your life, so choose the label you wear wisely.

Knowing what to wear and how to wear it is a powerful skill.  Some readers are at an advanced level and have a personal style.  Some will go on to experiment with clothes, trends, and brands.  While others may be too intrepid to wear anything besides t-shirts and shorts.  Once you conquer the clothing world and develop a lifelong interest in dressing right, you will feel more inspired to shop and enjoy your home, social, and business life.

Not sure?  No need to be scared of labels, black-ties, white-ties, button-downs, or bespoke clothing.  Here is where expert knowledge and trusted expertise comes in handy.  Many readers rely on Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven as their go-to source.  Let an enjoyable experience with these fashion recipes be your start.  If you are more advanced and comfortable with fashion items, share your ideas, purchases, and suggestions.





What we wear is powerful and attitude matters.  Remind yourself again:  You deserve to live well and be well.  Creating a closet of items right for you, along with excellent fitness, health, and life habits, is all an expression of how you respect yourself.  Knowing what to wear and executing fashion looks can be a challenge.  The guidelines, inspirations, and ideas in this article will spark your interest and get you wearing more than the same three items over-and-over.  As the notable custom tailor Alan Flusser observed, “A necktie’s motif, or pattern, expresses the poetry, the sense of whimsy, the psychology of the individual wearer.” 
   
Models.  The images we see in ads, movies, and media can influence our goals and perceptions.  Keep in mind the people in those professions spend a lot of time and have a lot of time to look their best.  Or computer graphics best.  Rather than focusing on images in media, focus on what is the right fit, look, and use of clothes for you.  As I learned from fashion designer Oscar de la Renta, fashion is about what is trending in stores and style is more about your own personality.  Take a moment to reflect upon good fashion sense, your life, needs, and goals.  That will be the center of what gets you fashion fit.  Structure your closet and drawers with options for your various activities, career, the climate you live in, and seasons. 

The Wardrobe Essentials.  It is key to make clothing selections with a long-term frame of mind.  Quality construction and timeless pieces are sharp and financially smart choices.  Know your measurements and proportions.  Take a look in the mirror to see what cuts, colors, shapes, and lengths are best for you.  There is a learning curve for going from being dressed by mom to dressing yourself, for your current physique, current life, and adventures.  Calvin Klein, business mogul and designer, once explained to me at a fashion show that what people wear should be modern, clean, and make them look their best.  Personal responsibility is at the heart of dressing well.  Study magazines, people in the streets, in school, models, and actors in your age range.  Also, seek out knowledgeable salespeople in stores and vintage shops.




Fashion Portfolio:  Power Suit Looks to Wear for Upscale Dining and Events




Suits have a long tradition in male and female wardrobes dating back to the 1700s.  The power suit came of age in the 1980s with sharper lines, blocks of color, and classic styling.  A power suit is one that conveys leadership and authority in the work environment.  Think Pierce Brosnan, Remington Steele.

Suits and formal wear are the standard attire for occasions such as job interviews, corporate meetings, funerals and life celebrations, weddings, horse races, legal proceedings, upscale dining and events.  These occasions are times to enjoy dressing up, to demonstrate your authority, and convey your ability to present yourself appropriately.  

Date night, upscale restaurants, certain clubs and lounges, theater productions, holiday parties, and more often have dress codes.  Dressing well shows you honor and respect the time and significance of an occasion and the people involved.  Study classic power suits, experiment with various colors, cuts, and designers, and discover what are the best staples for your wardrobe. 


Create the Look for Yourself


Suits and Ties






















Disclaimer: no payment was accepted for editorial coverage.





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Credit:  alanflusser. com, pexels .com, Title:  Remington Steele  Caption:  REMINGTON STEELE -- Pictured: Pierce Brosnan as Remington Steele -- Photo by: NBCU Photo Bank  © NBC Universal, Inc., amazon.com


Fashion Portfolio: Expert Tip for Dressing Well—Inspirit Your Wardrobe with South American Style by Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven



Fashion Portfolio:  
Expert Tip for Dressing WellInspirit Your Wardrobe with South American Style





In life we may not become famous, infamous, or blockbusters. We do; however, have the power to become something more than those labels.  It is our savvy and confidence that allows us to rise above and experience living life with good taste.  Our travels, life experiences, and dreams are snapshots on the runway of our lives.  There is no better place than the now to make the best strides down that runway.   This is your epic, your life, so choose the label you wear wisely.

Knowing what to wear and how to wear it is a powerful skill.  Some readers are at an advanced level and have a personal style.  Some will go on to experiment with clothes, trends, and brands.  While others may be too intrepid to wear anything besides t-shirts and shorts.  Once you conquer the clothing world and develop a lifelong interest in dressing right, you will feel more inspired to shop and enjoy your home, social, and business life.

Not sure?  No need to be scared of labels, black-ties, white-ties, button-downs, or bespoke clothing.  Here is where expert knowledge and trusted expertise comes in handy.  Many readers rely on Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven as their go-to source.  Let an enjoyable experience with these fashion recipes be your start.  If you are more advanced and comfortable with fashion items, share your ideas, purchases, and suggestions.

What we wear is powerful and attitude matters.  Remind yourself again:  You deserve to live well and be well.  Creating a closet of items right for you, along with excellent fitness, health, and life habits, is all an expression of how you respect yourself.  Knowing what to wear and executing fashion looks can be a challenge.  The guidelines, inspirations, and ideas in this article will spark your interest and get you wearing more than the same three items over-and-over.  As the notable custom tailor Alan Flusser observed, “A necktie’s motif, or pattern, expresses the poetry, the sense of whimsy, the psychology of the individual wearer.” 
   
Models.  The images we see in ads, movies, and media can influence our goals and perceptions.  Keep in mind the people in those professions spend a lot of time and have a lot of time to look their best.  Or computer graphics best.  Rather than focusing on images in media, focus on what is the right fit, look, and use of clothes for you.  As I learned from fashion designer Oscar de la Renta, fashion is about what is trending in stores and style is more about your own personality.  Take a moment to reflect upon good fashion sense, your life, needs, and goals.  That will be the center of what gets you fashion fit.  Structure your closet and drawers with options for your various activities, career, the climate you live in, and seasons. 

The Wardrobe Essentials.  It is key to make clothing selections with a long-term frame of mind.  Quality construction and timeless pieces are sharp and financially smart choices.  Know your measurements and proportions.  Take a look in the mirror to see what cuts, colors, shapes, and lengths are best for you.  There is a learning curve for going from being dressed by mom to dressing yourself, for your current physique, current life, and adventures.  Calvin Klein, business mogul and designer, once explained to me at a fashion show that what people wear should be modern, clean, and make them look their best.  Personal responsibility is at the heart of dressing well.  Study magazines, people in the streets, in school, models, and actors in your age range.  Also, seek out knowledgeable salespeople in stores and vintage shops.




Fashion Portfolio:  Expert Tip for Dressing Well—Inspirit Your Wardrobe with South American





Powerful cultures across the South American continent impact fashion, food, entertainment, and much more across the world.  The modern man is well influenced and makes his wardrobe strong by being aware of South Americancultures, their fresh and bright perspectives, coastal references, ruggedness, and debonair character.  Handsome designs, stylish haircuts, and the classics reign across the continent from Peru to BrazilVenezuela to Argentina.  The Amazon River, islands, stunning mountains, wide deserts, and adventurous cities, political, and social disquietude create vast differences, variety, and ways of living in each country.  Although, nature is a common theme throughout clothing in South America; sunsets, oceans hues, and green lands serve as inspiration

Countries within South America are blessed with sunshine, snow, agriculture, and tourism.  The cultural values, economics, arts, and other influences within each country make for a wide variety of needs in apparel.  Additionally, wardrobe is individualized for home, work, and play life.  Wool, alpaca, cotton, and denim are popular fabrics.  Throughout autumn and into spring thick, plush, coats and jackets are used to stay warm.  As spring blooms and summer approaches the warm coats give way to bright green and white shirts, pale blue suits, and tropical themes.  Also apparent is an interest in vintage clothing, as well as leather goods, bags, shoes, and boots.  


Create the Look for Yourself


Blazers, Suits, and Ties
















Sweaters









Shoes















Accessories 
























Disclaimer: no payment was accepted for editorial coverage.





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Credit:  alanflusser. com, pexels .com, Amazon. com, "Argentina, View of Boots in Las Rosas." AGSL Digital Photo Archive - South America. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 May 2017.  "Argentina, Man Eating from Knife in Las Rosas." AGSL Digital Photo Archive - South America. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 May 2017.  "Argentina, Guitar Player with Crowd after Pato Game." AGSL Digital Photo Archive - South America. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 May 2017.  "Argentina, Workers Loading Grain in South West Buenos Aires Province." AGSL Digital Photo Archive - South America. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 May 2017.  "Argentina, Men Examining Tobacco Plants in East Salta Province." AGSL Digital Photo Archive - South America. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 May 2017.

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