I always have a Rite in the Rain all weather notebook nearby when I'm sailing. I use it to jot down quick notes throughout the day that will be the source for my log book in the evening. If you can make out my handwriting (the nuns would cringe at how the Palmer Method failed me) I was approaching the inelegantly named Clump Island and Great Fox Island on Tangier Sound, trying to locate the channel that separated the two. I find these books here and there, sometimes at hardware stores, sometimes in little shops. They do cost a couple of more bucks than a regular pocket note book, but the writing and pages hold up very well even when soaked by rain or salt spray.
My anchor light came from WalMart for less than $10. It is a simple LED lamp that uses three AA batteries. It is not designed to be waterproof, but this lamp had been out in heavy rains with 30 mph winds and keeps on glowing. I keep two on board, one to hang up in the rigging, typically on the forestay, at night. The other I use as a reading lamp. I've looked at other waterproof, multiple LED lights at camping stores but can't see a reason to spend $25 for them.
I made my tethers based on a description in a John Welsford sailing story. I think it is 1 inch diameter polypropolene line with a carabiner at one end and a quick release clip (that came from a boat shop) at the other end. The line is easy to find because of the bright color and it floats too. I did some eye splices on each end. My splicing skills are not as good as Bruce's so I wrapped read electrical tape around the splices to clean it up a little. Bruce and I each have a tether of the same design and clip them on to some very nice, safe self-inflating pfd's with built in harness that Bruce was kind enough to donate to the boat. We'll skimp on a lot of gear, but we won't skimp on safety gear.
I made my boarding ladder out of an old piece of nylon line using a design from Hervey Garrett Smith's The Marlinspike Sailor. I leave it hooked on the deck cleat on the starboard quarter with the ladder itself inside the boat tucked behind the forward end of the boomkin. It sits there out of the way ready for a swim or an emergency. From outside the boat, and I've tried this out, I can reach up and pull the ladder over the side for use in boarding. I've used it a couple of times while swimming. I have never used it in case of a knockdown or man over board, but I'm glad to know it is there.
Bruce just called from the west coast to go over some equipment details. He is gearing up too.