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Blog-o-Sphere Think Tank Topic for the Month of January

What are you hoping to accomplish in 2013?

I have a fairly lengthy list, so I will do my best to condense it to a few of the top items on my radar to accomplish this year.

If not now, when?

Several items fall into this category.  Dan & I are heading back to Zion National Park this spring and one of the things I want to accomplish during this trip is the hike to the top of Angels Landing.

AngelsLandingThe trail heading to Angels Landing.

When I make it to the top, in addition to taking in the breath taking views, I want to sit there and bask in the sunlight, mediating and giving thanks that I made it.  Sometimes I have not done things out of fear and last year I experienced a personal awakening.  With that came the question, “If not now, when?”.

Another item that fits in that same category is entering an event where I need to train regularly and test my physical abilities to accomplish the task at hand.  I never considered myself very athletic as I grew up, in part I think because I grew pretty fast and that awkward stage of what to do with long limbs left its mark.  But now, I have done a lot of cycling, swimming, yoga and feel it’s time to commit.  So I have entered an event that is called an Aquabike that will take place in June.  The swim course is 1500 meters in open water followed by a 30 mile bike ride.  I know I can do this; the key is I’m working toward doing it faster and in better condition than I am right now.

Screen Shot 2013-01-19 at 5.15.28 PM

Follow the Simple Abundance Path

This is my third year reading Sarah Ban Breathnach’s book, Simple Abundance.  Why?  Well, for the past two years, I have started the book and somewhere along the way, I get behind on the daily readings.  This year, I am reading the passage for the day and following the principles.  It’s the first year I started my personal gratitude journal, which she says is key to success with finding Simple Abundance in your life.  It did make a difference in my life in the past two years, but not like it already has this year.

SimpleAbundance

Experience the Benefits of Meditation

Last year was the first time I started to practice meditation thanks to Dr Wayne Dyer’s Wishes Fulfilled Meditation CD and Deepach Chopra’s Creating Abundance Meditation Challenge.

Screen Shot 2013-01-19 at 5.26.40 PMI never really understood how one could go about the process and feel all calm and centered.  Well, it takes practice and patience.  Once I started to receive the benefits that come from meditation, it has made me hungry for more.   My goal is to enjoy the positive outcome of a daily meditation practice.

Grow as an Artist

I am looking forward to continuing to expand my body of work as an Art Jeweler.  My goal for this year is to have my work represented in at least one or two more galleries.

Another area where I want to experience artistic growth is in my writing.  Last year I enjoyed the 30 day writing challenge and while I didn’t complete my novel, it was a very fun and interesting experience.  So much so that I want to explore writing and see where it leads me.  I have started another WordPress blog that will strictly focus on my writing efforts, if you’d like to follow me in that journey.

This is my condensed list!!!  There’s more, but I think this gives you an idea that I definitely have A LOT I intend to accomplish in 2013.  Who knows, maybe Dan & I will finally get those room darkening curtains hung in our bedroom too!!!  🙂

Let’s see what my fellow Blog-o-Sphere Think Tank members shared on this topic!

pencilfox. http://www.pencilfox.com
Andes Cruz: http://www.andescruz.wordpress.com
Robyn Hawk: http://flyviewsandreviews.blogspot.com/
Shelagh Blatz http://designsbyshelagh.com/blog
Natsuko Hanks http://jewelrybynatsuko.blogspot.com/
Christine Esovoloff: http://christineesovoloff.tumblr.com/
Sierra Keylin: http://sierrakeylin.blogspot.com/
Barbara Donovan: http://barbaradonovan.blogspot.com/
WATTO Distinctive Metal Wear: http://www.wattoonline.com/news

Until next time, aspire to be more as an artist and a person.


PURPLE!!!

Yes, I have loved the color purple since I was a child. Pretty much all shades in that color family.   In fact, I’m using purple colored text for this entire post.

This is just a small sampling of my purple nail polishes.

I have the only purple soldering station in the world….at least the one’s Lexi sells.  It was a custom color for me.  Thanks Lex!

Gorgeous purple stones from Tiffany Stone to Sugalite to Porcelain Jasper to Amethyst Sage and more!

One of the variations on my logo.  Even my website has a purple theme!

Purple glass!

Purple flowers.   Dan & I had 5 dozen purple roses for our wedding.

I find it a powerful color.  It is one I truly love.

Let’s see what my fellow Blog-o-Sphere Think Tank friends chose as their favorite color:

Andes Cruz: http://www.andescruz.wordpress.com
Beth Cyr: http://bcyrjewelry.blogspot.com
Natsuko Hanks: http://jewelrybynatsuko.blogspot.com
Barbara Donovan: http://barbaradonovan.blogspot.com/
Pencilfox www.pencilfox.com

Until next time, aspire to be more as an artist and a person.

Well, I knew right away what I would write about for this month’s topic. One of my favorite things about summer is our annual weekend at Copper Mountain when Dan rides in the Copper Triangle cycling event.  I get to spend three relaxing days in the mountains with Dan.  While he heads off early on Saturday morning for the ride, I head to the pool to do laps (this year I got a mile in) and then wander Copper Village.  I spend some quiet time by one of the streams.  Listen to music, draw in my sketch book and take photos of wildflowers, people, and pets.  The weekend definitely feeds my soul, nourishes my spirit and revitalizes my energy.

Now I will let the rest of the pictures tell the story.

Dan is ready to go.

Dan heads out.  The other side of the sign says ‘START’, but in order to get this photo of him heading out I needed to set up on the other side.  It’s a better vantage point to get a picture of his face.

The actual finish line.

Things people do as they finish!

Gotta be careful when you take your hands off the handle bar after an 80 mile ride over mountain passes!

Dan finishes with a new personal best time!!!

One of the spots where I sit and find my Zen moments.

Playful pup.

Beautiful day.

Play.

After the finish.

Serenity

Love this fire pit.

So there you have it.  Great location in the mountains; one of my favorite things about summer.

Let’s see what my fellow bloggers shared about their favorite thing about summer:

Andes Cruz: http://www.andescruz.wordpress.com
Barbara Donovan:  http://barbaradonovan.blogspot.com/

Until next time, aspire to be more as an artist and a person

The Trusty Foredom Flex Shaft

Today’s topic for our Blog-o-Sphere Think Tank is “What is your Favorite Tool?” The subject was not limited to the tools we use in our respective studios.  There were many that came to my mind.

To qualify as one of my favorite tools, the tool must be practical and functional.  My dad taught me the importance of good tools.  So my narrowed down list ranges from my Chi flat iron (in purple of course!), to my NC Black Hammers, to the pooper scooper (yes, I know eeeiiiiwwww, but when you have doggies, it’s a necessity!!!), to my Husqvarna Viking sewing machine….yet, I kept coming back to my trusty Foredom Flex Shaft!

It’s hard believe that I acquired this tool in October of 2009! I was so overjoyed with it then that it became one of the topics for another blog post about tools. As much as I truly do enjoy the zen of hand finishing my metalwork, I find I go to my Foredom almost every time I work at my bench.  Why?  Well it has a multitude of attachments that make metalsmithing even more fun for me.  It’s a great time saver since I feel I need to make the most out of the time I work in the studio.  Here’s a list of a few of the things it does that makes my life easier when metalworking:

  •  Drilling holes is a breeze
  •  It can perform quick sweep, with the right attachment, to rid the metal of a scratch that could take 10 – 15 minutes or more of hand sanding
  • Adding a bit of texture to the metal with one of those 3M ‘spiders’ (radial sanding discs)
  • Smoothing out a bump in my soldered bezel wire
  • Removing a spot of solder that would take a while with hand sanding
  • Giving an polished edge to a finished piece with additional smoothness and shine

I truly love tools that make my life easier and this is definitely one of those.  It goes to the head of the class and I have found using it invaluable in my studio.

Now lets see what my fellow blog-o-sphere think tankers shared on this fun topic! Please visit their blogs and enjoy the read.  🙂

Andes Cruz: http://www.andescruz.wordpress.com
Shannon I’m On A Roll Koochin: http://thebassplayersdaughter.blogspot.ca
Barbara Donovan:  http://barbaradonovan.blogspot.com/
Robyn Hawk: http://flyviewsandreviews.blogspot.com/
Beth Cyr: http://bcyrjewelry.blogspot.com
Natsuko Hanks http://jewelrybynatsuko.blogspot.com/
Christine http://sistinachapel.blogspot.ca/
WATTO (Mary) http://www.wattoonline.com/news
Wendy Kelly http://www.wendykianakelly.com
Stephanie Clark http://thethinkingsofacoldweathergirl.blogspot.com

Until next time, aspire to be more as an artist and a person


Pikes Peak ~ Photo by Daniel Krucoff

For this month, our Blog-o-Sphere Think Tank question is:

 “What is the favorite thing about where you are located?”

Easy.  My answer is the mountains!  I can see Pikes Peak almost every day, depending on the weather.  Just this past week, it received its first coating of snow as fall starts and I always find it breathtaking.  It is a constantly changing landscape, depending on the lighting.  Ever since I caught my first glimpse of a mountain, I knew I needed to live close to them.  I am very thankful that I do.

Another view of Pikes Peak ~ Photo by Kathleen Krucoff

Please visit my fellow bloggers in the think tank to see their responses to the question:

Andes Cruz: http://andescruz.wordpress.com/
Mary Watson / WATTO http://www.wattoonline.com/news
Wendy Kelly http://www.wendykianakelly.com
Thomasin Durgin http://metalriot.blogspot.com
Andrea Bell:  http://feathersfreesiasandfishingtackle.blogspot.com/
Stephanie Nocito Clark http://www.thethinkingsofacoldweathergirl.blogspot.com
Barbara Donovan  http://barbaradonovan.blogspot.com/

Until next time, aspire to be more as an artist and a person.


Corn on the Cob

This month’s topic for the Blog-o-sphere Think Tank is “What is your Favorite summer food / meal?”  Well, growing up in northern Illinois, the land of corn in my mind (along with some other midwestern states), I have to say corn on the cob is one of my favorite summer foods.

My parents had a garden and it produced many tasty treats.  There was nothing better than fresh picked sweet corn, straight from their garden.  Sweet, tender, juicy.  I loved it.  Oh yes, and please do not hold the butter….the more the better with sweet corn!

I don’t have it that often any more, but given the opportunity, I will snag one with my summer meals.

Fresh Tomatoes!

A close second is tomatoes from that same garden.  They were extra flavorful; not like the hot house varieties the stores sell.  At one point, my folks would put sugar on them.  Then they switched to salt and occasionally pepper.  I’m afraid I didn’t stick with any of those condiments  and I just find having them plain is the best treat of all.

Please check out my other blog-o-sphere compadres and see what their favorites are too!

Andes Cruz: http://www.andescruz.wordpress.com
Brad Severtson:  http://hammeringoutaliving.blogspot.com/
Barbara Donovan: http://barbaradonovan.blogspot.com/
Shannon Koochin: http://thebassplayersdaughter.blogspot.com/
stephanie clark: http://thethinkingsofacoldweathergirl.blogspot.com
Laura FLavin : http://modernbirdjewelry.blogspot.com
WATTO: http://www.wattoonline.com/news

Until next time, aspire to be more as an artist and a person.

This month’s Blog-O-Sphere Think Tank question is: ” favourite quote(s)?”  (and why? if you want to share..)

I definitely have one….actually I have several, so here is my short list aka my Top Five.

1. “Well behaved women seldom make history” ~~ Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

I stumbled across this quote a few years ago.  It struck a chord deep in my soul.  I could and probably should write a book about finding oneself and coming into your own.  Let’s leave it at, the Genie has left her bottle and she ain’t ever going back in there.  So when I found this quote, I thought, YES!  Well  behaved women seldom make history.  Joan of Arc, Kate Hepburn, and others come to mind.  If you are going to leave your mark on this world, I’m not so sure being a well-behaved woman/person is going to achieve that.  So it has become one of my signature tag lines for my email and something I live by.

2. “I am not afraid…I was born to do this.” ~~ Joan of Arc

The determination that echos in this quote from Joan of Arc helps reinforce the understanding I have that fear is the worst thing any of us can feel as we approach a daunting task, make a decision, or anything else for that matter.  Do not give fear the power to hold you back.  Know that each of us is born to do something special.  Joan of Arc inspires me with her courage, strength and faith.

3. “Destiny is made known silently” ~~ Agnes De Mille

Thanks to the Simple Abundance by Sarah Ban Breathnach, I was introduced to this quote early this year.  When I am experiencing self-doubts, I find this quote lifts my spirits and my understanding that my destiny is right there, right in front of me, no matter how quiet it may seem at the time.  I believe in letting my work speak about who I am as an artist, a person.  Yes, I believe destiny is made know silently.  Meditate on that one.

4. “Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life’s coming attractions.” ~~ Albert Einstein

Mr Einstein was a genius; still is in my book.  This quote just makes me smile and feel child like.  Exhilarated, filled with anticipation.  How true is it that we are only limited by our imagination? I agree that our imagination gives us a preview of life’s coming attractions!  It’s one of my alternative email signature tags.

5. “Until next time, aspire to be more as an artist and a person” ~~ Kathleen Krucoff  🙂

Yes, it’s my quote and what I like to use at the end of my blog posts.  I like how positive this sounds and I want to encourage others to Aspire, yes, Aspire to be more as an artist….and also as a person.  Strive to achieve what you aspire to be.  I hope you find it encouraging.

These are my top 5 favorite quotes.  What are some of yours?

Please see what my fellow blog-o-sphere think tank compadres have shared as their favorite quotes:

Andes Cruz: http://www.andescruz.wordpress.com/
Brad Severtson:     http://hammeringoutaliving.blogspot.com/
Wendy Kelly: http://www.wendykianakelly.com/
Mary Spencer:http://www.wattoonline.com/news
Stephanie Clark: http://thethinkingsofacoldweathergirl.blogspot.com/
Barbara Donovan: http://barbaradonovan.blogspot.com/
Laura Flavin: http://www.modernbirdjewelry.blogspot.com/
Beth Cyr: http://bcyrjewelry.blogspot.com/
Thomasin Durgin: http://metalriot.blogspot.com/
Shaun Young: http://shaunyoung.ca/
Kathryn Cole: http://www.kathryncolejewelry.blogspot.com/
Natsuko Hanks: http://jewelrybynatsuko.blogspot.com/

Andrea Bell:  http://feathersfreesiasandfishingtackle.blogspot.com/

And yes, I leave you with: Until next time, aspire to be more as an artist and a person.  🙂  I truly mean it.


From the Blog-o-sphere Think Tank, the question posed to the group is: What is your favourite movie (or book!) – and why? Mine in Avatar, hands down.

I have a lot of favorite movies, but Avatar resonates with me.  I have seen it more times in the theater than any other movie and I cannot tell you how many times I have played it since we got our first copy of it on DVD.  When I’m working in my studio, I always have music or the tv on, and many run in the background as I work.  Avatar is one of those I go to when I need inspiration.

Why do I like this movie so much? The geek in me loves how the characters were brought to life through CG.  I found Pandora to be  such a beautiful place. The colors, the wildlife, the plants, the Navi.  Say what you like about the story line, I loved it.  It has inspired some of my jewelry designs.

I’ve always enjoyed science fiction.  Showing possibilities. It fuels my imagination. Our creativity is only limited by our imagination, so this movie spoke to me on many levels.  As it started, Jake describing his injury that left him in a wheelchair, yet he had dreams of flying.  When he first synchs with his avatar, the sheer joy he experienced because he could walk again, run again…that was joyful.  Jake’s first flight with his banshee…his dream of flying becoming a reality.  The purity of his spirit as the wood sprites were surrounding him & landing on him, giving Neytiri a sign that Jake was something special.  His courage as he becomes one of the People and fights for them.  It just inspires me.

So many powerful emotions. The bond that develops and grows between Jake and Neytiri.  The loss of Hometree.  The perceived betrayal.  The ultimate redemption.  It all works for me.

I’m looking forward to seeing what my fellow blog-o-sphere contributors share.  Please take a moment to check out their responses to this question:

Until next time, aspire to be more as an artist and a person.

Kathleen Krucoff


Artist and Metalsmith

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