Five Pawns

We had the awesome opportunity to have an exclusive interview with Five Pawns! Listen in on their inspirations, advice for entrepreneurs, and projections for the industry! More »

On the Grind

Foodie and café adventures! I am a Yelp Elite of East Los Angeles (since 2011) and eagerly await to earn my five year Gold Badge. More »

All Things Disneyland

Living in sunny Southern California definitely has its perks. By that I mean Mickey ears. More »

Hello Kitty Exhibit, Japanese American National Museum

iOS? Click here for the photo set!

Instagram – Sushi & Sashimi @ Restaurant Komasa

Instagram - #SashimiCombo


This place had a line forming before it opened on Sunday at 5PM! There were plenty of wait staff for the small restaurant, but it’s small so if your party is bigger than 5 people, it’s probably not ideal. We opted for the sushi combination B and sashimi combination for three people. This filled us up and the sushi was absolutely divine in the flavors melding. I highly recommend it. Although the sashimi was fresh and buttery, I felt the sushi was much better. DEFINITELY will return…

Three people + tax & tip landed us around $75. What a steal.

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Instagram – #HelloKitty

Instagram - #HelloKitty

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Instagram – So many donuts…

Instagram - So many donuts... #BaconDonut #KokoChurro

Cafe Dulce1071 reviews powered by Yelp

This place is nestled in one of the Little Tokyo plazas (near Nijiya Market). They offer drinks that had a slightly different Asia feel, with Hong Kong style teas but I had the Genmai Latte. This is prepared with whole milk and can only be made soy in hot. It seemed like it was too much trouble for the barista so I just went with the milk.

Pictured here is their assortment of donuts which included a bacon donut and something called a Koko Churro. Will try next time!

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Instagram – Gyro

Instagram - #Gyro

Which Wich42 reviews powered by Yelp

The Cerritos location had gyros on Bag 8! It’s not as good as other gyros but it hit the spot for me!

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Instagram – #RacistPumpkins

Instagram - #RacistPumpkins

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Instagram – Stout-Braised Chicken & Veggies

Instagram - Stout-Braised Chicken & Veggies

This was originally supposed to be a porter-braise but we used a stout instead. Also, we didn’t know celery root was not celery but we were lazy and used celery anyway. :)

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How to Alleviate Road Rage

I have a couple of methods for alleviating road rage. I know a lot of people struggle with this, and I am by no means a saint myself regarding this frustrating aspect of driving, but hopefully with less angry defensive drivers on the road, we can help eliminate the true crazies who apparently have loaded guns in their car… And want to kill people for no particular reason except that it’s Tuesday.

  • General Traffic
    • There’s really no method of calming oneself down for this but in my mind, I just expect traffic, so when there isn’t any, I am happier, but if there is, it’s what I expected.
    • There’s just a lot of people on the road. Yeah, everyone should go home. But then you’d be talking about yourself also. And when it’s afternoon rush hour… People are trying to get home.
    • Bubble wrap your steering wheel.
    • Add extra time to your travel so you don’t have to worry about trying to get there on time.
    • There is always traffic when you are late. Just accept it now.
      • Also, aliens will land their spaceship in the middle of your freeway when you have a meeting to get to.
      • There will also undoubtably be 5 traffic accidents in a row along the 5 during the peak of rush hour.
      • You will be stopped at every traffic light known to man before you get to the destination.
        • And suddenly there are new stop signs. And children and elderly people crossing the street. In walkers and canes.
      • And to top it all off, of course there will be no parking spots available.
    • Life is good, though. You got there in one piece.
  • General Stupid Drivers
    • This one really can’t be helped but you know, just you try to not be a stupid driver.
    • Stay calm and realize if you see a stupid driver, you are probably the better driver.
    • Laugh at stupid drivers.
    • Shake your fist at them and mouth gibberish until you make yourself laugh.
  • Accidents
    • Having been in accidents myself along the freeway, it is really important that you try to pull over to the side.
    • Heck, if you can get off the freeway, hundreds of people will silently thank you.
    • You only need a difference of 15 mph to kill somebody. When you get that ticket for going 80 in a 65, please remember that.
    • Make sure to turn your emergency blinkers on if you can. Also, open your trunk or hood to indicate that you are in an accident or having car trouble so other cars can visually see from far away and get into another lane.
    • If you’re a passerby, make sure you do just that, pass-her-by. Yes slow down in case there are is debris, but the best way is to move around it further as possible and move along.
    • Passengers can gawk. Drivers do not gawk.
  • People Cutting You Off
    • Calm down, they might brake really hard and it could be a scam for an insurance accident.
    • Calm down, they probably really needed to get somewhere.
    • Calm down, you probably didn’t notice that you weren’t letting them in when they were trying to come in.
    • If you follow them, you better be ready for some kind of horror story ending in lots of blood and tragedy. (Is it worth it?)
    • Just let them go, only Jesus can save them now. Throw your Bible at them. Just kidding, don’t do that.
  • People Not Letting You Pass
    • Signal
    • At least you signaled, if you really need to move, proceed to cut them off. Only if they are a jerk though, and this can be done safely, and slowing down is not possible at your speed before hitting a divider or wall.
    • Do not drive into the shoulder to pass somebody. Don’t be a jerk to a jerk. Also you could get a flat tire and cause traffic for everyone.
    • Slow down and wait for them to pass since they need to be ahead of you so badly.
    • Here’s a good one… Just pass your exit and turn around. Yes, pass your exit and turn around. I can’t believe how many people I see zoom across 5 lanes to get to their destination. Actually get to your destination. Safely.
  • People Who Don’t Use Their Blinkers
    • My dad taught me this one, not to be annoyed at people who don’t use their blinkers.
    • The principal is based on this: yes, it’s polite and the law to tell people where you are going, but not everyone announces he’s going to break the law.
    • If the person slowly starts drifting towards your lane, he’s probably going to change lanes.
    • If the person is a distracted driver, he might go into your lane, you should probably get out of their blind spot.
    • Don’t drive in people’s blind spots. Sometimes people do use the blinker but they use it fast and you might miss it.

Sometimes people are just terrible drivers and sometimes people are just completely oblivious to the rest of the cars on the road. There are “road divas”. There are “turtles”. There are “rabbits”. But we have to share the road. Please be safe, and road rage helps no one.


Yes, you.

Pumpkin Cheesecake

I found this recipe on

Beau sends baking ideas my way about once or twice a year. I decided to make two pies, one for test kitchen and photos, one for bible study. :D



Double Layer Pumpkin Cheesecake

By Pamela Published: October 14, 2014

  • Yield: 08 Servings
  • Prep: 30 mins
  • Cook: 40 mins
  • Ready In: 4 hrs 10 mins

Recipe originally via



  1. Preheat oven to 325°F (165°C).
    2014.10.14 Pumpkin Cheesecake 008
  2. In a large bowl, combine softened cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla.
    2014.10.14 Pumpkin Cheesecake 001
  3. Beat until smooth.
    2014.10.14 Pumpkin Cheesecake 002
  4. Blend in eggs one at a time.
    2014.10.14 Pumpkin Cheesecake 003
  5. Remove approx. 1 cup of the batter and spread evenly on bottom of graham cracker crust.
    2014.10.14 Pumpkin Cheesecake 006
  6. Add pumpkin, cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg to remaining batter and fold gently until well blended. (Folding because you don't want to over beat the eggs.)
    2014.10.14 Pumpkin Cheesecake 005
  7. Carefully spread remaining batter over crust. If you dump it all in the middle it will slowly roll to the edges on its own (use spoon to help if not rolling fast enough for you).
    2014.10.14 Pumpkin Cheesecake 007
  8. Bake in the preheated oven for about 35-40 minutes, or until center is almost set.
  9. Allow to cool, then refrigerate for 3 hours or overnight.
    2014.10.14 Pumpkin Cheesecake 009
  10. Cover with delicious toppings to make as decadent as humanly possible and enjoy!

Cook Smarts: 5 Sauces