First Finished Field Notes.

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Not mine! Gracious, I have at least 60-70 full from the last 2 1/2 years in a Beer Box* upstairs that I need to find, so that I can archive my last three notebooks since mid-July. Santa brought my daughter a set of the Summer Camp Field Notes books and pencils for Christmas 2011. She scored one when she started Serious Potty Training a while back. We carry it with us when we go to the coffeeshop, BMA, etc. She finished it last week.
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Full! It’s stocked with drawings and is covered with stickers. She started to eraser pictures so that she could draw more when we were out two weeks ago, prompting the introduction of the next book for her drawing adventures. At 3, she can draw recognizable pictures. Seriously. I don’t have a picture of it yet, but a recent drawing session went something like this:

Charlotte: Daddy, what do you want me to draw for you?
Daddy: A lion. And trees.
Charlotte: (two minutes later) Daddy! Here you go.
Whereupon she presented me with a two-page spread featuring a lion. And trees. And here I was thinking we didn’t get to the zoo often enough.

She’s always had a fondness for drawing and writing tools. It’s almost like our house has pencils,pens, paper and accessories everywhere. Eh…
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She stole my wife’s Balsam Fir Field Notes when she was about 9 months old and spilled coffee on it somehow, and she claimed a green Mongol HB pencil from me around the same time.
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At the risk of offending some of my Fellow Field Notes Fans, I joked that, with one full notebook, Charlotte probably has finished more than a lot of people who own an entire Archival Box of limited editions. For myself, I enjoy the photos folks put online of their notebooks that are beaten up badly and full of Good Stuff.

I have enough “rare” Field Notes editions that I could fund at least a decade of subscriptions by selling them — if I hadn’t filled them up. Like pencils, I think of them and treat them as tools. I use them. I use the hell out of them. I have had a few people ask to trade for my Fab.Com edition. I had to break it to these good folks that I filled them within 3 weeks of getting them.
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Certainly, Charlotte has other notebooks. She has a serious fondness for Composition Books, sometimes asks for her pink Moleskine, not to mention her Fairies books. I gave her a new pink pocket notebook last night, and she stole an old Golden Bear from my cup, claimed it as her own, and drew 3-4 pictures before I had to drag her off to bed.

*[Box in which 12 bottles of Excellent Beer arrived, before their cheerful departure.]

9 Responses to “First Finished Field Notes.”

  1. Liz Rotundo says:

    First of all…hmmm…how do we know this princess-covered one isn’t yours? Ha ha! And second, did you send this to Field Notes? I know they’d love it!

    • John says:

      I sent it them last night. :)

      I’d totally admit if that one was mine. :) She’s plastered a few of mine with similar stickers; she likes to leave her mark. :)

  2. What an artist! I am filled with envy over the Super Grover sticker. Grover’s always been my favorite muppet.

    This may be a whole new post in and of itself, but I’d be interested to know how you use Field Notes. Do you use them for specific notes? Or, like myself, are they just for free-form “notes to self”, or quick sketches and blurbs? What system do you use to categorize and archive?

    This is something that’s interested me a lot lately, as I’m trying to develop some kind of rhyme or rhythm for my notes. I’m getting tired of paging through and seeing notes like: “product spreadsheet revisit” alongside several pixel dimensions like “1400×396″. :D

    • John says:

      That WOULD be a good post. Have to get thinking on this. :)

      To tell the truth, I sort of ditched my regular journal when I had Field Notes all over from a subscription (I don’t have a sub anymore, *tear*). Everything goes in there:

      Drawings
      Books/movies/music/strollers to look up
      Directions
      Journal/diary-type entries
      Notes (lately, for instance, fried-green-tomatoes recipes; birthday present lists for all the people I know who were born in August; back-to-school sections to hit)
      It serves as that place where people at a bar draw something they can’t explain or something ridiculous someone said. Someone told me last week, “You know, I think my mother’s mother was a whore,” and I wrote it down. :)

      My archive is currently just a Sam Adams box whose art I liked. I really like those wooden boxes, but I’d need three straight away. For that much money, I’d rather buy notebooks. :)

    • John says:

      Forgot: Dollar bins at Target are usually a good spot for Sesame Street stuff. I’m pretty sure that’s where she got those, for her birthday party favors last year. They have held up really well, too!

  3. She is too cute! This was a fun post–thanks for sharing this with us!

    I love how the only word left visible on the front cover is “Durable.”

    • John says:

      Thanks, Elizabeth! If Henry turns out to be half as fond of drawing as she is, we’ll need to have pencil sharpeners installed in every room. :)

  4. Davey says:

    Very nice post. It brought back some good
    memories of my son and daughter when they
    were young and would share there art and ideas.

    They’re teenagers now and they still use Field
    Notes and Moleskines. They just don’t share. Ha!
    it’s probably for the best. I imagine their content
    today would scare me to death.

    Thanks again for this post, it dug up some really fond
    thoughts.

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