Monday, November 29, 2010

Leather Notebook Cover

I purchased this leather notepad cover from Jack and Kelly Gully about a month ago. I realized that it would hold an A5 notebook with just a little modification. So I pulled out the 5X8 notepad, cut off the pencil loop and front business card holder and popped in a Clairefontaine clothbound notebook. It works very well and keeps the pages of the notebook from getting knocked around in my briefcase. Not bad for $35.

I just realized that I need to select my pictures in reverse order,so they will be in the proper order on the post!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Noodler's Nib Creaper

Here are all the pictures from the Noodler's Nib Creaper mini review

Noodler's Nib Creaper - Mini Review

This is my first attempt at a review on this blog. My photography skills are questionable, my writing skills are feeble, but I have a passion for handwriting and fountain pens, so here goes!

I decided to try out a couple of pens to consider as a possibility for Christmas gifts. Brian at the Goulet Pen Company was gracious enough to etalk me through some considerations for inexpensive pens. He reviews several of them on his blog . Much buzz has been astir about the $14.00 Noodler's Nib Creaper fountain pen, a piston filled inexpensive pen. I thought I would check it out.

My first impression about this Noodler's Ink pen was it was fun to see the internal mechanism. My second thought was a question as to what ink I would "deflower this virgin" with. I set my eyes upon Noodler's Navy. Filling the pen is dead simple. You remove the blind cap on the barrel of the pen, run the piston down to the end of the barrel, place the nib and part of the feed section into the ink and cycle the piston twice. That's it. Pull the pen out, wipe off the nib and feed, replace the blind cap and get down to writing.

The Nib Creaper holds an impressive amount of ink. It appears to be at least twice as much as is held by a Lamy, Waterman or Cross converter and about twice as much as a Reform 1745 German school pen with a similar filling mechanism. I expect it also holds about twice as much as vintage Sheaffer lever fill pen. This could be a problem if you tire of a color quickly and would rather not write it completely out, but it should be very simple to dump the ink back in the jar and flush and fill again with your next choice.

The nib is a steel nib in a F or perhaps M size. The nib says Noodler's Ink. In writing, it is smooth and leaves a consistent line. I have not written with it enough to determine if it will have any type of shading or line variation. But for my use, smooth and ease of use is important.

If I compare this pen to any type of rollerball, ultimately it will be much more economical. The pen cost $14 and a 3 ounce bottle of Noodler's ink costs $12.50. So I have $26.50 invested. I expect I will be able to fill this pen 40 times at a minimum per bottle of ink so my cost per fill is around $1.16. I think each bottle will last much longer than that, getting my cost per fill down to about a quarter. Tell me you can find any rollerball pen that costs that little and will provide as much ease of writing.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Writing with a 1.5 mm Lamy Italic Nib

This is a quick cell phone picture on some writing I did with a Lamy Italic 1.5 mm nib.

Writing with a 1.1 mm italic nib on a Lamy Safari

This is some handriting I did with a new nib on my Lamy Safari. The nib is a 1.1mm italic

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Homemade cookies and envelopes!

I write letters and send postcards. I am not creative. I don't do mail art. However, this week, I had two penpals send me homemade envelopes! Art of a Letter and Leaving a Paper Trail both sent homemade envelopes. I will return a reply to each, in the envelope they have provided.

Just to get in the spirit of homemade, I went to the store, bought some cookie dough and individually placed each cookie puck on a cookie sheet and whipped up 4 dozen chocolate chip cookies - NOW MADE WITH REAL HERSHEY'S CHOCOLATE CHIPS!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Postcard from Netherlands

I receive a postcard from the Netherlands and mailed out postcards to Latvia, Lithuania and a letter to Virginia.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

To my wife

I wanted to write you a letter,
But life got in the way.
I wanted to pen a few little words
How you take my breath away.

I wanted to write you a letter,
To tell you now what I see
You don't really take my breath away,
Your love is what brings it to me.

Butterfly in the Fall

Here is a fun envelope from Rosie. It appears to be hand drawn and colored! Wilson loved it! He grabbed it out of the day's mail and said, "Dad, LOOK WHAT YOU GOT!"

Saturday, November 13, 2010

More letters out, 1 postcard in

i received a postcard from Miami. I sent a postcard to Germany and letters to California and Alabama. If I will get on the computer when it is still light, I will take some photos and post them.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Postcard in, letters out

I received a postcard from Moscow today. I mailed letters to Ontario, Alabama and South Carolina

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Elm Trees!

I know that the tree favored by the settlers of the Great Plains was the elm tree. I know that it is easy to grow and maintain for quite a few years and makes for a nice looking large tree. We have two in our back yard that are at least 3 feet in diameter.

But I hate them. The foliage is nothing special. The leaves are small and take forever to emerge. Throughout the summer, you must spend time picking up broken branches, every day. In the fall, the leaves do not turn colors other than greenish brown. The leaves will not fall off the tree until after you have raked up all of the other pretty leaves and cleaned your yard. Then, in about 18 minutes those suckers all drop. Too small to rake and they don't even make good compost/leaf mold.

If you are lucky enough to have one die in your yard, you get to spend a great deal of time, in the summer, cutting that sucker up, splitting the wood and feeling wonderful that you laid in a great deal of firewood for the upcoming winter. But, the only way that crap will keep you warm is the sweat you work up hauling wood in and carrying ashes out. My Grandma Shannon used to say, "Elmwood new or elmwood old, elmwood's heat is mighty cold!"

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Strips AND a flamingo!

I received this letter from my new penpal R . She apparently has some fun with stickers and what not and doesn't give up on the adhesive backing from the sticker sheets. What a fun letter! And she included some photos of a trip to Ireland. She is a good penpal. In fact, I am writing back, right now!


I received postcards from Finland and Portugal today. How much fun is Postcrossing? I have 5 cards traveling and 5 postcards received by people. My received total is now 3.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Rocky Mountains sent from South Carolina

Here is a Colorado Postcard sent from South Carolina! Looks like it might have gotten stuck in the postage machine in the upper right corner.

Postcard from Belarus

Here is my first postcard to receive from Post Crossings It arrived from Minsk, Belarus. It traveled 8500 km in 10 days to get here!

Another new Penpal

I received a letter from a Going Postal member I wrote last week. Wow, he packed a lot of information onto a couple of pages of paper. So I wrote back to him using a new Daiso mini fountain pen that I received from a Fountain Pen Network friend. It is tiny, but fun to write with.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


I just finished writing a letter to my nephew, Shane. He is a Marine. He is currently deployed near Asia. I know that he needs a letter from family.

I am sure you know a service member. Write them a letter.