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Sharone Hakman: Hansik Holiday Festival

Sharone Hakman:  Hansik Holiday Festival
Pointe Viven - Jesse Bluma. All rights reserved.

 Familiar with Korean food?  If not, then you can bridge the gap through barbeque.  I attended the 
first ever Hansik Holiday Festival at the Wilshire Hotel in Los Angeles.  It was hosted by Cathlyn
Choi, you may know her from Cathlyn’s Korean Kitchen on PBS.  The event featured Korean music, food samplings, and cooking demonstrations.  I found out about the event through Sharon Hakman.  

He demonstrated how to make a few dishes at the event.  For one dish he tossed out a some chestnuts;   I got one and cracked it open for him to cook.  Sharone has a bbq sauce that he used to marinate the beef.  He made some flavorful food to sample.  Not sure of the recipes yet, Sharone did tell me he would get the recipes out.  When he does I will pass those along.  He also mentioned to me that he will be doing more cooking classes across the country.  Look for him in your city.

Sharone Hakman
"Life is short, eat it up!"

Occupiers kicked out of Iowa coffee shop

Des Moines coffee-shop owner evicts Occupy protesters; ‘You’re not allowed to ever come back’
What's the future of Occupiers?

Make Every Day New Year's Day by Jesse Bluma

Make Every Day New Year's Day

In the late 1500s, Pope Gregory XIII ordered improvements made to correct the Julian calendar of the Romans.  It took a few hundred years for the Gregorian calendar to be adopted across Europe and the Americas.  Protestant countries, such as England, resisted because it was associated to the Catholic Church.  The Russians and Greeks adopted the calendar in the early 1900s.

Each year presents us with opportunities, challenges, and learning moments.  These can be related to gratitude, spirituality, patience, confidence, humility, listening, growing, action, love, nature, humor, aging, work, family, and consistency.  Sometimes we may look at the world and see it all as "conflict", maybe that is how some of us are born and hardwired or maybe it was how we were taught to write by some of our teachers.  It does not have to be that way, our lives and stories we write don’t have to be created around the narrow word “conflict”.  Stories and life are wider and richer than just “conflict”.  Each day is a gift.  The statements below help us reflect and remember how to live each day as if it were 

"Life is not dated merely by years. Events are sometimes the best calendars."
Benjamin Disraeli

"The art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook."
William James

"Carpe diem, quam minimum credula postero"-
(Seize the Day, putting as little trust as possible in the future)

"as we have opportunity, may we work the good to all" 
Galatians 6:10

"Life is difficult.
This is a great truth, one of the greatest truths. It is a great truth because once we truly see this truth, we transcend it. Once we truly know that life is difficult--once we truly understand and accept it--then life is no longer difficult. Because once it is accepted, the fact that life is difficult no longer matters."
M. Scott Peck, The Road Less Traveled

"Without recognizing the ordinances of Heaven, it is impossible to be a superior man."

“Life is a journey."

“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. He who knows does not speak.
He who speaks does not know.  Manifest plainness, Embrace simplicity, Reduce selfishness, Have few desires. People are difficult to govern because they have too much knowledge. The more laws and order are made prominent,  The more thieves and robbers there will be.  Be careful what you water your dreams with. Water them with worry and fear and you will produce weeds that choke the life from your dream. Water them with optimism and solutions and you will cultivate success. Always be on the lookout for ways to turn a problem into an opportunity for success. Always be on the lookout for ways to nurture your dream.  At the center of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and you know what you want."

"Faith is Action, Based upon Belief, Sustained by Confidence
in God's Word and His promise to perform it."

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Student Veterans of America: Deserves a Cookie

Student Veterans of America:  Deserves a Cookie

"Founded in 2008, Student Veterans of America is a coalition of student veterans groups on college campuses across the United States. SVA has two major components: the executive staff and student veteran groups. SVA member chapters are student groups that have formed on college and university campuses to provide peer-to-peer networks for veterans who are attending those schools. These groups coordinate campus activities, provide pre-professional networking, and generally provide a touchstone for student veterans in higher education. Each local group plays a critical role in ensuring that every veteran is successful after their service."

See the links below to learn more and to donate.

Student Veterans of America Links

Gourmet treats by Jesse Bluma @PointeViven

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Towel and Robe Hooks

Towel and Robe Hooks

What to do with a towel when you are finished with it?  If you are under ten years old you might think throwing it on your bed or on the floor is the right decision.  A towel hook is probably the better decision.  I went looking for a towel hook and couldn't find exactly what I was looking for considering the space.  I narrowed my search down to the five hooks above.  I chose the Skylands robe hook and decided to purchase that instead of a specified towel hook.  The installation was easier than I had complicated in my mind, directly following the directions was best for this one.  What a change from other directions.  Installing this product was on the easier side of home improvement.   

"The Skylands Double Robe Hook in Brushed Nickel is designed to accommodate up to 10 lb. of weight. Its concealable design helps to hide its included mounting hardware for a clean, uninterrupted look.  Hang and go installation to help make installing it easy.  Brushed nickel finish.  Concealed installation helps to hide mounting hardware for a clean look.  Zinc construction.  Designed to hold up to 10 lb.  Mounting hardware included"

Bosa Hook Box (above)

Loure® robe hook - K-11585

Martha Stewart Living Skylands Robe Hook in Brushed Nickel

Delta Arzo Robe Hook in Polished Chrome
Model # 77535

Item No. 3005L

Artisanal goods by Jesse Bluma at PointeViven
using organic ingredients and inspiration
from California, Central, and South America.

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Image credits:

SunWest Organic Rice

SunWest Organic Rice 
Pointe Viven - Jesse Bluma. All rights reserved.

I recently joined a membership warehouse club.  The store is massive and carries everything from rice to tires, apples to computers, books to cold medicine.  I discovered SunWest rice as I sojourned the store, glad I found this rice.  Brown rice is an easy and nutritious food to eat.  It is less processed and retains more nutrients than other kinds, supplying vitamin B1 and a good amount of magnesium that helps with blood pressure and muscle cramps.  SunWest mills rice that is organic, grown without pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, sewage sludge, genetically modified organisms, or ionizing radiation.  It is also Kosher, made within Jewish law that prohibits foods made with certain animals or animals slaughtered in a certain way, and without a mixture of meat and milk or grape juice.    

Organic Harvest Medley

"A blend of Aromatic Brown Basmati Rice, Wild Rice, Long Grain Red Rice and Calmochi Brown Sweet Rice. The Brown Basmati base gives this blend a rich, nutty flavor and the heirloom red and wild add spice and color to the dish."

Basic Cooking Method

In a heavy sauce pan, combine 1 cup of SunWest Harvest Medley, 2 - 2 1/2 cups of water.

* Rather than using water as the package directions state, I use Wolfgang Puck chicken broth.
It is much more flavorful than using water.

* I use 2 cups of broth, because 2 1/2 cups is too soupy. 

1 tablespoon of olive oil or butter.

*I use olive oil or Smart Balance spread. 

Bring mixture to boil, stir to combine ingredients.

Reduce heat, cover with tight fitting lid and simmer for 30 minutes or until all liquid is absorbed  (cooking times may vary).

Remove from heat; allow to rest for 5 minutes.

Fluff with fork and serve.

Gourmet treats by Jesse Bluma @PointeViven

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Take the Flu and Cold Pledge

 The Flu and Cold Pledge

I (state your name)
solemnly and sincerely pledge myself

1.  Eat right.

2.  Sleep enough.

4.  Practice relaxation techniques.

5.  Cough and sneeze into my sleeve and not my hands.

6.  Wash my hands before touching my face or eating.

7.  Use hand sanitizer.

8.  Avoid door handles and high-fives.

9.  Not share pencils, drinks, make-up, hats, or hair brushes.

10.  Resist airplane water, seat pockets, tray tables, pillows, food, and lavatories.

11.  Spray hotel rooms I stay in from top to bottom with disinfectant.

12.  Wash my hands after handling mail.

13.  Clean my cell phone, home phone, and work phone on a regular basis.

14.  Wash my hands after handling money, coins, and credit cards.

15.  Will stay home at first signs of illness, rather than infecting others at work, school, church, and holiday parties--even if that means I miss out on a good time.  It's the Golden Rule.

Gourmet treats by Jesse Bluma at PointeViven
using organic ingredients and inspiration
from California, Central, and South America.

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Image: graur razvan ionut /

Molasses Sandwich Cookies

Molasses Sandwich Cookies
Pointe Viven - Jesse Bluma. All rights reserved.

The hit of just the right of amount
of sweetness. These rich 
sandwich cookies have a buttery
molasses filling. Spread a thin 
layer of filling between two 
cookies and enjoy with a glass 
of ice-cold milk. Made with 
organic ingredients.

Gourmet treats by Jesse Bluma @PointeViven

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Joshua Gunter Photographer

Joshua Gunter Photographer 
Pointe Viven - Jesse Bluma. All rights reserved.

I recently met photographer Joshua Gunter.  His subject matters include sports action, skate-surf-snowboard life, and the the outside world.  Joshua attended Brooks Institute of Photography.  Brooks Institute was founded in 1945 and offers  programs in film, visual journalism, and graphic design.   The campus is located in Santa Barbara, California.  Joshua is now in south Orange County and working on local and international projects.

You can see more of Joshua's work at


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The Digital Story of the Nativity

The Digital Story of the Nativity
"The Digital Story of the Nativity" shows how the birth of Jesus may have happened in our modern times.  A great Christmas video that makes you think.

The actual event was recorded as follows.

"And it came to pass in those days, there went forth a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world be enrolled --

this enrollment first came to pass when Cyrenius was governor of Syria --

and all were going to be enrolled, each to his proper city,

and Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, that is called Bethlehem, because of his being of the house and family of David,

to enroll himself with Mary his betrothed wife, being with child.

And it came to pass, in their being there, the days were fulfilled for her bringing forth,

and she brought forth her son -- the first-born, and wrapped him up, and laid him down in the manger, because there was not for them a place in the guest-chamber.

And there were shepherds in the same region, lodging in the field, and keeping the night-watches over their flock,

and lo, a messenger of the Lord stood over them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they feared a great fear.

And the messenger said to them, 'Fear not, for lo, I bring you good news of great joy, that shall be to all the people --

because there was born to you to-day a Saviour -- who is Christ the Lord -- in the city of David,
and this [is] to you the sign:  Ye shall find a babe wrapped up, lying in the manger.'"

--Luke 2:1-20 Young's Literal Translation

Note:  In the video the birth of Jesus is portrayed as December 25, although the exact date is unknown.


BUZZBREWS Kitchen Review by Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven

BUZZBREWS Kitchen Review

Breakfast at night?  Count me in for that.  BUZZBREWS offers a menu of options including breakfast, salads, proteins, and Mexican dishes 24 hours a day.  If you are traveling through town and need a place to refuel or you're in town and need a late night meal, this is the place.  Organic, fresh, and healthier meal options are not popular yet in Texas.  Perhaps BUZZBREWS will lead the way.  

I love crepes and enjoyed their riff on making them savory with the "French Connection".  This included two crepes stuffed with grilled chicken, tomato, button and portobella mushrooms, spinach, Anaheim peppers, poblano cream sauce, feta and cheddar cheese, served with garlic marbles (see photo above).

"BUZZBREWS Kitchen is an eclectic and funky round-the-clock eatery specializing in all day breakfast favorites, omelets, salads, grilled meats, south-of-the-border creations, and all-you-can-drink coffee.  An extremely clean little pop art mecca with a mouthwatering menu, BUZZBREWS has the freshest, most well prepared food in its price range and is a cozy haven for hungry travelers, breakfast lovers, late night hang-out seekers, professionals on the go, park bench philosophers, foodies and coffee connoisseurs of all kinds."

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Buzzbrews Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Gift Opening Dog

Gift Opening Dog
This is Sophie, my friend Sara's doggie, opening up Christmas presents.  She is a yellow Labrador, a great dogand smart as you can see.  Sophie also happens to be the sister of my dental hygienist's dog.  Did you know that Labrador Retrievers are a type of gun dog?

This breed is able to swim well with their webbed paws, making it easy for them to retrieve fishing nets in bodies of water.

Do you have any brilliant pet videos?  Feel free to share them below.

P.S. If you think your friends would enjoy this video, please share it with them.  A good friend is someone that can make someone else smile for the day.

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Christopher Dylan Herbert: endBeginning by New York Polyphony

Christopher Dylan Herbert:  endBeginning by New York Polyphony
Pointe Viven - Jesse Bluma. All rights reserved.

I recently talked with Christopher Hebert about his album endBeginning.

If you are a teacher or student of history you may be interested in this hard to find music of the Middle Ages.  Each year I run a Renaissance faire with my students, which gives me the idea this could be played at a Middle Ages faire or party.  Cook up some 16th century foods, costumes, games, and have a fun time.  As a teacher I am always looking for realia, real life items that bring better understanding.  The album endBeginning includes the baritone voice of Christopher Hebert of New York Polyphony.  Christopher is a studied musician, Middle East expert, and happens to be the nephew of Martha Stewart.  I may not always agree with his politics, although I do appreciate now having something great to share with my students.

"New York Polyphony has assembled a programme of sacred vocal music composed largely by Franco-Flemish composers active in the first half of the 16th century, exploring from a number of perspectives the themes of grief, loss and mortality.
This music was produced during a volatile period in European history, a time punctuated by religious persecution, destructive war-fare, and repeated outbreaks of plague and famine. Death was an ever-present and inescapable companion even for the most privileged members of society.
Music played a vital role in helping people cope with the feelings of sadness, loss and anger over death, whether through the raw expression of personal grief in a devotional lament, or the more reserved expression of collective grief found in music intended to accompany a formal liturgical ceremony."  (

"endBeginning was recorded October 2010 in the superb acoustics of the 14th century church of Länna, Sweden."

You may purchase endBeginning at  
If you have a Mac, then you probably will want to download the MP3 version.  

If you have a Mac, you will probably have to get the free StuffIt Expander to open and play the album file.

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My Chat with Andy Gibson: The Christmas Song

My Chat with Andy Gibson

Andy Gibson is the man behind the song "Don't You Wanna Stay", the number one duet between Jason Aldean and Kelly Clarkson.  He helped to write the song and parlayed that into his own career with his first single, "Wanna Make You Love Me".  Andy was born in Washington state and considers Vince Gill, Elvis Presley, Luis Miguel, and Cristian Castro his musical influences.  Not only does Andy Gibson sing he has worked as a graphic designer, photographer, videographer, deck hand, pizza maker, and studio engineer.  He got stage experience by performing in restaurants.  

I asked Andy what is next for him and he said, "My Christmas single 'The Christmas Song' is available on iTunes".   That is one song to check out if you are already a fan or a new fan.  Also glad Andy followed me on twitter!

Andy's performance on the Great American Country's TV special “Christmas in the Black Hills” with Thompson Square, Bradley Gaskin, Tracy Lawrence.  

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Credit: Andy Gibson


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