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Pelikan 1935, Originals of their Time

Pelikan 1935, Originals of their Time

Did you receive a new fountain pen for Christmas? Bottles of Herbin ink under the tree? A stocking filled with Rhodia? Show us! We’d love to add your images to our Rhodia Fan photo pages. Simply send your images using the title of the page you are submitting as the subject line and send to, stephanie at rhodiadrive dot com and we will review for publication.

Rhodia: In Your Bag

Rhodia: On Your Desk

Rhodia: Favorite Pens

Rhodia: Favorite Pencil

Remember – the Paper Project starts back up next Monday and will be the 1st of 2015!

Image above courtesy of Randy Schaffer

The Art of Journaling: Recording Holiday Traditions

Holiday Rhodia

Have you ever considered keeping a journal dedicated to holiday memories and traditions?

Here are a few journaling prompts to get you started:

Holiday foods: What are the traditional foods that you eat at the holidays? What new foods did you introduce this year? What came out perfect, and what needed improvement?

Mom and Gram each made a dense “filling” around the holidays and that was never like anyone else’s filling or stuffing that I knew. It wasn’t until years later that I figured out what they were making was actually a savory bread pudding

Holiday decorations: What decorations do you put out during the holidays? Are they family heirlooms, or are they new? Are they influenced by any cultural or religious traditions?

Growing up, we put silver icicle tinsel on our imitation tree with blinky lights and taped golden garland around the door frames along with Christmas cards from friends and family. Gram had a mini pre-decorated Charlie Brown style tree. It would take her 5 seconds to set up; she’d plug it in, drape a mini tree skirt under it and it was good  to go.

Favorite Gifts: What was your most favorite holiday gift ever? What gifts missed their mark?

One of my all-time favorite gifts was actually a birthday present from a friend. It was a small fabric bundle tied with a piece of yarn. Once opened, I discovered a tiny feather, a small seashell, a few beads from her favorite bracelet that had broken, a tiny piece of driftwood and some small rocks. (Mostly items I knew she’d collected along her many walks in nature) She’d placed the bundle inside a cardboard box that she’d collaged with meaningful images. 

 Who do you spend time with during the holidays? Do you always go home for the holidays? Spend it with friends?

When I was first with my husband, we’d go on a whirlwind tour to visit at least 5-8 different relatives. I especially liked spending Christmas Eve at my Mom’s. 

What cultural holiday traditions do you observe, or do you remember from when you were younger? 

What I remember most is all food related. Mom’s kiffles, Polish kielbasa, macaroni and potato salad. The filling I mentioned earlier. Ham with pineapple glaze. 

Need a few more prompts to jump-start your holiday journal? Take a look at the links below. 

30 Holiday Themed Journal Prompts at Art Journalist

December Writing Ideas: 30 Holiday Journal Prompts at Journal Buddies

Pen and Paper: Holiday Journaling Ideas at Carol Rubenstein

Creative Writing Prompt: Summer Vacations – Then and Now

Rhodia Pencils

It has been historically close to impossible for me to take a staycation without feeling like I *have* to do work but this past holiday weekend I think I did a pretty decent job of tuning out the world and just enjoying myself. I spent time puttering around the garden, reading, cooking delicious food, watching fireworks and contemplating life.

As I took several long walks around the surrounding neighborhoods, I noticed that things seemed very quiet and my assumption was that a lot of people were either on vacation or visiting with family and friends for the holiday.

This started me thinking about the types of vacations that people take. We didn’t travel much when I young girl, but I can distinctly remember two trips to the Jersey Shore- (Long before Snooki…) then in my mid to late teens, all I wanted to do was to go to Wildwood or Seaside Heights. Nowadays, I’d rather be in the woods or by a nice lake in the middle of nowhere. Nature, quiet, solitude. Ahh…

Today’s creative writing prompt centers around this:

Do you still frequent the same vacation destinations that you did when you were young?

Why or why not?

Happy Birthday America


Wishing you you all a joyful holiday weekend.

Independence Day, commonly known as the Fourth of July, is a federal holiday in the United States of America commemorating the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, declaring independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain (now officially known as the United Kingdom). Independence Day is commonly associated with fireworks, parades, barbecues, carnivals, fairs, picnics, concerts, baseball games, family reunions, and political speeches and ceremonies, in addition to various other public and private events celebrating the history, government, and traditions of the United States.  – per Wiki

Books for the Summer: What are You Reading?


I’m not exactly sure what kind of book makes for a good “Summer Read” but in typical Steph Smith form, I just finished one book, Mr. Mercedes, (despite my love for Mr. King, don’t waste your time with this one) and am currently reading at least half a dozen others including, “What are you looking at?” shown above, and “I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings” by Maya Angelou.

What books are either in your summer beach bag, or are loaded & ready to go on your e-reader? And how did you choose them? Do you go by the bestseller lists or online reviews? Recommendations from a friend?

To Honor the Fallen


Memorial Day is a federal holiday in the United States for remembering the men and women who died while serving in the country’s armed forces. The holiday, which is celebrated every year on the final Monday of May, was formerly known as Decoration Day and originated after the American Civil War to commemorate the Union and Confederate soldiers who died in the war. By the 20th century, Memorial Day had been extended to honor all Americans who have died while in the military service. (Per Wiki)

Merry Christmas!

nativity 1

Wishing everyone a peaceful and merry Christmas.


A Moment of Levity

In an attempt to help relieve some of the stress associated with the holidays, I’d like to present to you this video of an adorable dog rolling around on a pickle.

Favorite Holiday Cookies


In the early 1970s, my Mom’s kiffle cookies were probably everyone’s favorite. A delicate filled cookie of Eastern European origin, they would disappear in mere seconds from the moment they were cool and dusted with powdered sugar. Apricot, prune (lekvar) and walnut were the traditional fillings Mom used in her kiffles and my favorite was always the walnut which had a taste similar to the nut rolls and nut tossies that she would also sometimes bake.

This blog post talks about kiffles but shows a construction method different from Mom’s. Mom would roll out a sheet of dough which she would then cut into squares. The filling was placed on the middle of the square and then two opposite corners were folded in leaving the filling exposed at two ends of the cookie. (Like this)

What are your favorite holiday cookies?


Christmas and Holiday Card Traditions


In 1953, U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower issued the first official White House card. Over the years, these cards would typicaly depict White House scenes as rendered by prominent American artists. The number of recipients has snowballed over the decades, from just 2,000 in 1961 to 1.4 million in 2005. (Per Wiki) The image above depicts American president Lyndon B. Johnson’s 1967 White House Christmas card.

It’s been a good number of years since I’ve sent out holiday cards and do you know what? I miss it. I don’t hardly receive them anymore either – and I’m not sure if that’s because of people not sending them, or people just not sending them to me.

Do you still mail out holiday cards? If so, what kind do you send? Traditional store bought cards, photo cards – or maybe handmade cards? If you don’t send them anymore, why not? Limited time? Cost of postage?


Giving the gift of Rhodia for the Holidays

Holiday Rhodia

Planning to give or receive the gift of Rhodia for the holidays this year? Smaller sized Rhodia products like the classic No.’s 8, 10, 11 (in graph or lined) & 12 (also available in the dot format) make great stocking stuffers, as do the Webnotepads, Rhodiarama Webbies, No. 12 “R” pads, side stapled pocket sized (A7) notebooks, the pocket sized Weekly Planners and last but not least, the Rhodia Unlimited pocket notebook.

Which are you hoping will be in your stocking?

What are your plans for shopping on Black Friday?


The day following Thanksgiving is often considered to be one of the busiest shopping days of the year- will you be making any purchases on this day? Is your inbox as flooded as mine is with special holiday sales and discounts for both online retailers and brick and mortar stores? I’m unlikely to venture far from my local shopping district at least for today, though I’m sure to poke around to see what deals I might find online.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Pumpkin pie

Wishing you and yours a day filled with love and gratitude.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Belated International Fountain Pen Day!


I can’t believe I missed it! The first Friday in November is International Fountain Pen Day and I am noting my 2014 calendar as we speak. So what did you do to celebrate? Did you buy a new pen? New inks? Flush out your favorite pen and refill it with a daring new color? Please share!

Image courtesy of corporate_p on Instagram which depicts a Kaweco  filled with Private Reserve’s Burgundy Mist on a Rhodia dotPad

Orange and Black


Orange and black – how appropriate for Halloween! Do you know how these colors came to be associated with this ghoulish holiday? Me neither! Maybe it’s from orange pumpkins and black cats, fall leaves and the color of a witches hat…

Here are a few opinions on the topic:

What is the origin of Halloween colors?

Halloween Colors: Where Did They Come From?

The Origin of Pumpkin Carving and Halloween Colors

PS: What was your most favorite Halloween costume you ever wore? I always struggled with masks because of wearing glasses but a number of years ago I found a mask made of a see-through fabric and I was thrilled to finally be in full disguise! 

Image above courtesy of mrmikedudek on Instagram

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In Your Bag

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Grab Your Camera and Show us Where You Buy Your Rhodia!

Target? Dick Blick? Borders? Art Brown? We want you to show us where you buy your Rhodia... The next time you are out and about,  snap us a picture of where you buy your Rhodia products so we can assemble an online gallery of local retailers. To... Read on »

Favorite Pens

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David Allen of GTD on Rhodia

David Allen is a productivity consultant who is best known as the creator of the time management method known as “Getting Things Done”. David comments on the Rhodia Meeting Book: “I love this Rhodia pad. First, the paper stands... Read on »

Chef Hosea Rosenberg on Rhodia

Season 5 (Bravo Network) Top Chef Hosea Rosenberg, originally from Taos, New Mexico, was always good at math. After graduating 3rd in his class at Taos High School, he moved to Boulder, CO to study at the University of Colorado. His dream... Read on »

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If so, contact me via e-mail at stephanie at rhodiadrive dot com with your proposed subject matter. We are looking for posts ranging in length from 100-500 words. Photos to accompany the article are a welcome bonus. If you have been reading... Read on »

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Rhodia Drive is a blog about Rhodia notebooks and the people who use them. It’s a place where devotees of this “French orange notebook” contribute ideas, experiences and links on the latest tools, events and general notebook-related news.

Rhodia Drive attracts creative people passionate about their Rhodia. Designers and artists, writers and pen collectors, thinkers and free spirits—anyone who loves notebooks—come together on Rhodia Drive.