Rite in the Rain

Students’ notebooks

Notebooks for students go beyond just taking notes in class (although of course they are great for that too).

Students are in a very creative time in their lives, and notebooks are perfect for capturing that creativity on the go and preserving it for years to come.

My college roommate’s boyfriend carried a hardcover sketchbook with him wherever he went. I was fascinated by it, and loved to flip through the pages. In his book he sketched something reflecting where he went that day, what he was doing and especially people he was with. It was like a visual journal capturing each day. Today it must bring back amazing memories of his college years.

When I was in college I took copious notes in class, partly to stay focused during lecture but mostly because I am a visual learner. I remembered much more material from reading my notes than I ever would have remembered just from listening to the lecture. I’m so visual that during exams I would recall information by visualizing the page in my notes, even which side of the page it was written on, and that would trigger the memory of the correct answer. Despite being a visual learner I don’t have a true photographic memory, unfortunately. That would be very useful!  Because I relied on my notes for learning, I was never without a notebook. When I could afford it I treated myself to a cool notebook with good paper to make the daily task of note-taking pleasurable.

Styles and types of notebooks abound, but it’s worth investing in good notebooks to write notes in, especially in graduate school. Your notes need to last for several years, and will be a record of your research and progress toward your degree.  Make sure you use a notebook that’s up to the task at hand. A couple of examples:

Your research notes are precious, and must be kept in archival books. Leuchtturm notebooks are especially great for science lab notes and research because of the numbered pages, index and archival quality paper.

Students of geology, ecology, archaeology and others whose research and coursework takes them outside depend on an all-weather notebook to capture field notes in any condition. Rite In The Rain notebooks are the gold standard of outdoor notebooks and can handle outdoor use no matter what the weather.

Of course the goal for any student is graduation and life beyond school. Notebooks are a great place to plot your future. Mind maps and timelines are best drawn in notebooks to give you an idea of what needs to be done to help you reach your goals. The open pages give you the freedom to explore and imagine your options, and record them for future reference and further re-working.

Every student should keep a notebook with your list of graduation requirements (including mandatory classes, credits, projects etc.). Each time you complete a class or other requirement, check it off your list and record the grade or result. I found this was especially important when I was in graduate school. At the beginning of my studies, my advisors and I agreed on what my requirements were for graduation. Because I did a multi-departmental degree, it was up to me to keep track of what all of my advisors had agreed on. At the beginning of my final semester when one of my advisors tried to demand I do additional coursework that would have added another semester of classes, I was able to bring out my list of agreed-upon requirements and make my case that I could graduate when they were completed. Good thing I had kept that list or I might still be doing “one more suggested class!”

Notebooks are essential tools for students when taking notes and planning for graduation and your life beyond. They are also a source of creative expression and a way of recording this unique time of your life.

Best of luck to all you students out there on your progress toward graduation and your professional life beyond!

Post by guest blogger and fellow notebook aficionado Laurie from Plannerisms.com


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Monday, July 25th, 2011 organization and time management, Products, Thoughts, Writing Comments Off on Students’ notebooks

Scott and Todd’s excellent waterproof (ad)venture

We live in Oregon, which like many parts of the country has been hit hard by the recession. The recent decision by Intel to built another plant, or fab in Intel speak, in the Portland Metro area was welcome news. A new plant means thousands of construction jobs and over 1000 permanent jobs; folks who will pay taxes, buy sandwiches for lunch etc. The whole eco-system of interdependent services that goes with manufacturing.

The Intel news, the importance of domestically made product and the fact that the rainy season has started in Oregon made me think of Rite in the Rain waterproof notebooks, because generally we have notebooks on our brain. Rite in the Rain’s company history shows, that manufacturing in the USA requires different ingredients to come together to be successful; the will to manufacture where you live,  perseverance,  intellectual property, an efficient set up and having a unique product.

In 1916 a printer, Jerry Darling, started a company to supply paper notebooks to loggers in the Seattle Washington Area. Loggers were outside no matter what the weather and the enterprising J.L Darling company invented an oil based coating, that when applied to regular paper made it waterproof. Its waterproof paper gave the company a leg up over the competition and Rite in the Rain products became well known to anyone who needed to take notes outdoors.

Scott and Todd Silver, the current owners,  grew up with the J.L. Darling company, which their dad joined in 1958 as employee number 3. Scott & Todds father grew the business and eventually became part owner. In 1994 their Dad asked them to join the company and Todd, a marketing major and Scott, a federal bank examiner knew a good thing when they saw it. A niche company with a secret water proof sauce. They became owners of the business in 1995 and set out to work. The brothers are both avid outdoors men with an interest in environmental science. They loved the business, but the oil based secret sauce bothered them. Determined to change the companies dependence on an oil based coating, they set out to invent a water based solution to make their paper water proof. (Very zen if you ask me… fight water with water). In 2005, 9 years later! They had it figured out and patented.

Now Rite in the Rain paper is made from FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) certified pulp with a water based coating and is fully recyclable. Their factory prints with soy based inks and cut offs are recycled back into the manufacturing process. The bright yellow polydura covers  are made in the USA too from 100% post consumer plastic, like empty shampoo bottles. Scott and Todd were able to put their companies environmental practices on a sustainable footing. The companies environmental record now speaks as much to their love of the outdoors as its notebooks do.

Todd and Scott’s excellent adventure gives us some great journals and writing pads. Todd send us the attached image of the dumpster behind their 33,000 square foot facility in Tacoma Washington. This dumpster gets emptied once a week and is contains the grand total of non-recyclable garbage of the entire factory. Todd proudly noted that last week it was only 2/3 full.

Winter is the time for mostly very wet outdoor fun and if you are looking for gift ideas  for the outdoor enthusiasts on your list, Rite in the Rain journals are sure to be well received.

reduce re-use recycle and have a small dumpster

Recycling reduced garbage to a small dumpster with a weekly pick up

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Monday, November 22nd, 2010 eco-friendly-recycling, Products, Thoughts Comments Off on Scott and Todd’s excellent waterproof (ad)venture



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