When I am at La Cascade teaching, I encourage my students to do simple drawings and paintings and keep them in a journal held together with binder rings. This quick painting and drawing daily allows you to record what amazes and inspires you in the French countryside. The simple journal makes you realize that your pages are not too precious and encourages you to paint without your inner critic telling you your work must be perfect. .....its worked so far.
I think if you use a very special journal, leather or feather covered with pristine pages that are bound into it, you get a bit nervous about messing up its pages with your work. So I am happy with our imperfect journal style of painting and we do bring home actual journals full of paintings.