Roger, if you use notes vertically (on the left or right) rather than horizontally (stacked) here's a use @JBaty shared that I really like.
I keep notes on the right hand side, taking up about 1/3 of the total screen area so I can easily read them but giving the Plex the most screen space. However, if I'm going to be modifying notes quite a bit, or want to read them I double click the splitter line. This swaps the plex area with the notes area, so now the notes takes up 2/3 of the screen and the plex 1/3. This simultaneously gives me more room to read/write and expands the toolbars so all the buttons are available and not condensed into a dropdown. After doing this a while I've found it gives me the best of both worlds. Edit: Also in Preferences > Keyboard I think all of the menu options can be given a shortcut. I haven't assigned everything a shortcut yet (I try to only learn 2-4 in a month to help cement them in memory and haven't gotten to the notes yet), but if you are a heavy notes formatter it would definitely be worth investing some time in setting these up.