Cookie Sticks by Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven

Cookie Sticks 
Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven. All rights reserved.

Cookies are 360 degrees of fun, whether circular or rectangular.  These artisanal morsels are made with high standards and quality ingredients.  Your party guests will not be able to resist these fun cookies. 

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Free Recipe: Peaches with Agave Sauce by Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven

Peaches with Agave Sauce 
Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven. All rights reserved.


2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
1  1/2 Tablespoons agave nectar
2 Tablespoons flour, sifted
1/4 teaspoon salt
Organic peaches, washed and sliced


Combine butter, sugar, and agave in a small saucepan and melt over low heat.  

Sift flour.

Stir in flour and salt into the saucepan mixture.

Remove mixture from stove.


Drizzle this agave sauce over sliced seasonal fruits, such as organic peaches.  Add some yogurt and granola for a complete tasty treat.  

This sauce is also excellent over high quality ice cream or drizzled on top of your favorite brownies.  This sauce has a nuanced flavor of a light butterscotch.  Be creative and share what desserts you use the sauce with at home.  

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The Griddle Cafe Review by Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven

The Griddle Cafe Review
Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven. All rights reserved.

Above:  Strawberries and Cream Waffle covered with fresh strawberries and brown sugar sour cream topping...sprinkled with powdered sugar.

Making good breakfast food is harder than it looks.  The Griddle Cafe offers breakfast all day long, as with a lunch menu.  I ordered the strawberries and cream waffle, seen above.  The buttermilk waffle was perfect and sweet, plenty to eat without any sides.  The strawberries were fresh, which is a pet peeve of mine at those breakfast chain diners.  

Super size stacks of pancakes are on the menu too, so be extra hungry or prepared to take home a box if you don't finish.  The "BLUESberry" pancakes look to be a popular selection.

Tip:  Bring a friend and share one stack of pancakes and get a side like eggs.  

If you happen to be in Los Angeles, or a tourist in the city, this spot hits the spot.  The food has been enjoyable over the course of several dining experiences.  There has been a line each time of about twenty minutes, so arrive before you are starving and get your name on the list inside the cafe.  

The Griddle Cafe is located 7916 Sunset Boulevard
(on the corner of Sunset and Fairfax)
The cafe closes at 4:00 P.M.

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Disclaimer:  No payment was accepted for editorial coverage.

The Griddle Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato 

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Storage Solution: The Linear Shelf Solution

Storage Solution:  The Linear Shelf Solution
Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven. All rights reserved.

Storage conundrums be gone.  Storage issues can arise after purchasing a new bed, rearranging furniture, moving into a new home, et cetera.  If a place is needed to keep items next to a bed, in an entry, or home office, a linear shelf can be an excellent choice.

 "Clean.  Functional.  The Key Shelf provides a simple place to stash your stuff.  Slots for your keys and charger, and enough shelf space for your wallet and phone.  The minimal design looks great anywhere you want it.  The Linear has three straight slots from the left hand side of the shelf, the shelf measures 10" long and 5" deep and mounts to the wall with two anchors."  

Install the linear shelf using a ruler for measuring, level for balance, pencil to mark the holes, two ribbed plastic anchors, two screws, and a screwdriver (items not included with shelf).  The shelf is a perfect substitute for a bedside table.  Large enough for a small alarm clock, a glass of water, a pencil, and small pad of paper for those 2 A.M. bursts of ideas.  The linear shelf would also make a good addition in an office, bathroom, or garage.

Linear shelving and storage options are vital to organization, utilizing space efficiently, and overcoming storage conundrums.  The linear shelf above, by theUncommonGreen (, is an excellent buy.  As you look around your home, garage, or office, see what other uses you may have for linear shelving.  This minimalistic and mathematically good idea for storage shelving originates with Euclid; he lived in Greece, was a mathematician, and defined linear as "breadthless length".  Putting our mathematical skills together with creative products can solve most every storage challenge.

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Marbelous Game Night

Marbelous Game Night
Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven. All rights reserved.

What a fun idea for kids, the kids at heart, or at a party.

The "Marbelous" table ( has an integrated track for marbles and is made of solid maplewood by Ontwerpduo.

"Ontwerpduo (est. 2008) dreams and demonstrates, fantasies and fulfills, devises and designs.  The fantastic world of Ontwerpduo emerges from the collaboration and chemistry between Tineke Beunders and Nathan Wierink.  The studio works for labels and brands on request, and once a year presents its own thematic collection in which the poetic and practical converge.  Ontwerpduo is now an established name in Dutch design.  What started as a duo is now a design studio with a close-knit team of devisers and doers."

Please share your unusual games for kids and the kids at heart too.

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Archi's Acres Deserves a Cookie Award

Archi's Acres
Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven. All rights reserved.

The personal stories of triumph, hard work, and genuine achievement do not always make headline news.  Yet, we take notice when a person is able to break through the minutiae of what often constitutes news.  Colin and Karen Archipley are those rare individuals that make us take genuine notice.

The Archipley's created a unique VA-supported program not only gives returning veterans an employment opportunity, and also a chance to decompress and gradually adjust to civilian life.

"Archi’s Acres, Inc. is a USDA certified HydroOrganic farming enterprise.  This wate-wise and highly efficient farming enterprise headquartered in Escondido, California, the company is owned and operated by husband and wife team of Colin and Karen Archipley.  The Archipley’s are a unique combination of talent, vision, commitment and success.  Colin is a combat-decorated Marine Sergeant and Karen is a previously successful fashion industry entrepreneur.  The Archipley’s founded Archi’s Acres, Inc. with two core objectives:

-The first was to create a viable sustainable organic produce farming business.

-The second develop a business that would provide entrepreneur opportunities for veterans in sustainable organic agriculture."

See more at

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Carmageddon and the Use of Effective Community Propaganda

Carmageddon and the Use of Effective Community Propaganda

Above:  Early ‘Carmageddon' traffic moving smoothly

The months of television warnings, celebrity tweets, radio spots, speeches by governmental officials from various agencies has proven one thing:  we can get it right.  Humans are remarkable creatures, turning the ordinary and mundane into the extraordinary. 

 For three days in the summer a portion of the 405 freeway was closed to traffic to create a new carpool lane, which involves taking down part of the Mulholland Bridge.  The avoidance of mass panic, traffic jams, and epic doom is due to individual choices to stay away from the route and create alternative plans.  This is not to say the residents and business owners closest to the project have not been affected.  Considering the size and scope of the construction we have survived and thrived.  

What makes this possible?  Propaganda; 1718, from Mod.L. propaganda, short for Congregatio de Propaganda Fide "congregation for propagating the faith," committee of cardinals established 1622 by Gregory XV to supervise foreign missions.  Modern political sense dates from World War I, not originally pejorative (

The community was given a singular goal by every local news channel, newspaper, magazine, politician, and governmental official repeatedly giving updates and information about the 405 construction.  The echo chamber of this event also included every individual in the community that posted information about it on his or her social media account, those that talked about it with their fellow congregation members at church, and laughed about the predicted doom with their co-workers.

This is the social capital that is so vital and needed in Los Angeles, California, and the rest of our nation.  Robert Putnam wrote Bowling Alone to explain "The Collapse and Revival of American Community".  We are revived and improve when we do what is right and prepare.  Ultimately, as Robert Putnam explained in Bowling Alone, "[t]o build bridging social capital requires that we transcend our social and political and professional identities to connect with people...".

Propaganda is good, as teachers, coaches, parents, and chief executive officers know.  People need content to be repeated several times before it sinks into their mind.  The more a slogan or information is repeated, the greater the frequency, the more likely it will be recalled.  It takes seven or more times for a message to be repeated and remembered, especially remembered if over a variety of platforms, including images, videos, and internet posts (Kruse).  The endless months of words, pictures, and hands-on experience of driving the 405 and seeing warning signs gave residents a common goal and plan.

Imagine if we organized the same way with Carmageddon as a community on other issues.  What if our local news reporters chose to stop giving us fluffy, bloody, short, shiny news stories in their broadcasts?  What if our local politicians stopped presenting a million different projects and promises every day?  What if our efforts were focused?  We could focus and think through and encourage

 -better roads in other areas
-best parenting practices
-solutions to combat drug use
-improved attitudes toward education
-excellent nutrition in all our schools.

Solving these and other topics is not impossible, it is not that we "can't" solve or improve them; it is not that we should just give up.  We need to focus and spread the propaganda.

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Tips for Breakfast in Bed by Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven

Tips for Breakfast in Bed

If you are seeking to give someone a special treat or to treat yourself, why not make a dynamic meal to eat in bed?  

1.  The most overlooked detail may be the bed.  The right bed provides great sleep and will act as your breakfast table.  I recently discovered Boltz, the maker of steel beds, tables, shelving, and other furniture items.  I like their Classic and W style beds.

2.  The other overlooked detail is the mattress and boxspring.  You need a quality night's sleep to enjoy Saint Valentine's Day morning.  Dad needs to sleep on a comfortable mattress to have a good Father's Day.  The kids need the best sleep environment to achieve enough hours of sleep.  

When choosing my mattress I started long before purchasing one.  I kept a log of mattresses I slept on at various hotels.  Testing a bed at a mattress showroom is not always enough.  Getting the opportunity to sleep on a mattress for a few nights gave me a better idea of what I liked and didn't like.  I then decided on a Sealy.

3.  Another excellent tip is to get a mattress encasing to help prevent dust mites.  No one wants dust mites for breakfast. 

4.  New bedding and pillows is another way to make this an extra special event.  Make your pillows or get the kids to make mom a pillow.  Plan ahead to visit stores, such as Marshalls, to find new bedding and revisit a few times as new merchandise arrives.

5.  A nice tray that is large enough and has a lip is necessary to precent spillage when serving breakfast.  Remember to include utensils and a cloth napkin.  

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Credit:  Boltz. com,

Who exclaimed "Let them eat cake"? by Jesse Bluma

Who exclaimed "Let them eat cake"? 
Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven. All rights reserved.

The French Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen (1789)
Stated that the French government received its power from the people
Strengthened individual rights and equality

Bastille Day marks the the storming of the Bastille on July 14, 1789.  The French were partly inspired by events in America.  In contrast, the French were more intense with Enlightenment ideas by such authors as Rousseau.  The use of "force" and "secularism" was popularized through these ideas.

The French Revolution was a rising up of crowds seeking to take away power and influence of King Louis XVI, his wife Marie Antoinette, and religion.  It has some similarities to the American Revolution; however, in America the revolution was guided more by debate and protest rather than mob attacks.  

After storming the Bastille (which had only seven prisoners, no political prisoners as had been thought), farmers and commoners burned down houses belonging to nobles and clergy.  This vengeful act was followed by the "trial" of King Louis and his execution.

Marie Antoinette was then falsely accused of abusing her son and executed.  It is a common misconception that Marie Antoinette said to the poor peasants "Let them eat cake".  This was in fact a rumor started by her enemy Rousseau.  Many others were executed by guillotine that the mobs did not like.

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Source:  World History Medieval to Early Modern Times, Burstein and Shek, 2006 Holt

DEBATE: Should Government Remove Children From Families If They Become Obese?

DEBATE:  Should Government Remove Children From Families If They Become Obese?
Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven. All rights reserved.

Did you catch this debate regarding obesity and children?  The concern is at what time, if any, should or must government officials take a child that is obese out of a home.  The removal of minors from family homes is a significant topic, as with "police state" tactics.

"Meme Roth, of the National Action Against Obesity, said without hesitation that enabling obesity constitutes child abuse.  Her counterpart, marriage and family therapist Karen Ruskin disagreed.  'I find it extremely disturbing that in our generation we seek out detachment, that we seek out government, in order to try to take the child out [of the family] instead of treating the unit,' she said.

Perhaps one alternative is for officials with family services to connect parents and their children with doctors, health experts, and wellness information."

Initializing the contact between families and government officials is also of concern.  "If you saw a child that was underfed and you didn’t call CPS (Child Protective Services), that wouldn’t be acceptable,' Roth said.  She argues that it shouldn’t be any different in the case of an overweight minor."

For the full discussion see

After seeing the full discussion, please share your insights and what you learned.

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Credit:  America Live, Martha MacCallum, FoxNews

Popular TV Shows Teach Children Fame Is Most Important Value, Psychologists Report; Being Kind to Others Fell Dramatically in Importance Over 10 Years

Popular TV Shows Teach Children Fame Is Most Important Value
Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven. All rights reserved.

This is a fascinating topic regarding adolescents, pop culture, and family life.  The concern is for how much influence celebrities, television, music, and social media has on children.  Research and experience reveals a change in the values, what young people care about, over time.  Fame or infamy have come to be more important to many young people than community and kindness

"Fame is the No. 1 value emphasized by television shows popular with 9- to 11-year-olds, a dramatic change over the past 10 years, UCLA psychologists report in a new study.  On a list of 16 values, fame jumped from the 15th the first spot... benevolence (being kind and helping others) fell from second to 13th, and tradition dropped from fourth to 15th.

'I was shocked, especially by the dramatic changes in the last 10 years,' said Yalda T. Uhls, a UCLA doctoral student in developmental psychology and the lead author of the study.  'I thought fame would be important but did not expect this drastic an increase or such a dramatic decrease in other values, such as community feeling.  If you believe that television reflects the culture, as I do, then American culture has changed drastically.'

'The rise of fame in preteen television may be one influence in the documented rise of narcissism in our culture,' said the study's senior author, Patricia M. Greenfield, a UCLA distinguished professor of psychology and director of the Children's Digital Media Center at Los Angeles.  'Popular television shows are part of the environment that causes the increased narcissism, but they also reflect the culture.

The study is published in the July issue of Cyberpsychology: Journal of Psychosocial Research on 
Cyberspace, a peer-reviewed journal featuring psychosocial research on the impact of the Internet on people and society.  Parents should talk with their children about the shows they watch, Greenfield and Uhls advise, 'but it's impossible for most parents to consume the amount of media their children consume,' Uhls said."

Read the full article at, then share what you learned and your insights.

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