Sunday, October 21, 2012


 God has blessed us with noses that can smell.  My nose has a stronger sense of smell than most.  It's both a blessing and a curse.  A blessing when cinnamon rolls are baking and a curse like this week when a skunk sprayed somewhat near my shop where I do my projects.

   I got up one day last week and went out to my shop to do some things and I smelled skunk. When I opened my shop door, it smelled like the skunk had been in there although there was no way it had been.  I lit three candles and turned on the air conditioner to circulate the air  Now it is several days later and the smell still lingers, although not as badly.  Thankfully, none of my fabric picked up the smell.  Now I am worried that we have a vagabond skunk wandering around our house just waiting to spray some unsuspecting person.  Me!!   I know we have possums because we had one in our trash can once and I know we have raccoons because one time a pregnant one took over our dogs' house and wouldn't let them in and I had to call animal control to come get it.  We also had a rabid raccoon stopping traffic in front of our house once.  It stood up in the middle of the road and rolled around and acted weird so I had to call animal control again.  That is why I am very careful to get my dogs rabies shots on time every year.  Raccoons have been known to kill dogs. And a rabid raccoon biting a dog would not be good.  Since my dogs are outside all the time they must be protected.  By the way, do you spell racoon with two cs or one?  I'm too lazy to check it out.

  Now back to smells.  Smells can make us think of things.  Sometimes when I smell a bologna sandwich I am transported back to elementary school in the school cafeteria eating lunch with my friends.  I still have the lunchbox I used when I was in grade school.  Mom would pack a bologna sandwich, some homemade cookies wrapped in wax paper and sometimes if I was lucky potatoe(yes, we were taught we could spell potato with an e)  chips also wrapped in wax paper. There were no ziplock bags back in the fifties and no clingwrap either.   There were no food police either telling us what we could or could not eat.  Funny.  People ate so much more unhealthily back then,lots more fats like real butter and lard, but people weren't fat because they worked hard and children played outside all the time and didn't sit in front of a television or sit playing games on an Ipad.  We were out running, skipping, jumping rope, riding bicycles and playing outdoor games.  Anyway, we had this one cook at our school who made the best cinnamon rolls.  The day she baked them, the school would smell like warm cinnamon rolls all day.  We could go back for seconds and many a time I went back for a second cinnamon roll.

   There are smells that remind us of seasons.  I cannot imagine a Spring without the smell of lilac.  We had a big lilac bush in our front yard when I was a girl.  I loved taking a book outside and laying underneath it and reading.  Mom would have me cut sprays of it to bring in the house and the house would smell like lilac.  I now have a few lilacs in our yard and they always mean Spring to me. 

   Fresh cut grass or hay makes me think of Summer.  When I was a girl, Daddy would cut and bale hay and straw enough for the long winter ahead.  I loved working in the barn in the haymow helping to stack the bales of hay.  They would be stacked clear to the rafters and we had a huge barn.  The barn would smell so good with the fresh hay in it.  My brothers and I would climb on the bales and my brothers even made a cave once and we crawled through it. It was kind of scary because the hay bales could fall down on us, but the added fear made it even more fun.  We swung on the hay hook that was suspended between our two haymows. Boy, it was fun to live dangerously.  I have a danger streak in me even though I am a very cautious person.

    Fall brings burning leaves and the smell of pumpkins when they have a candle burning in them for Halloween.  Now you can't burn leaves. You can't even have an open fire we learned.  We were burning wood in our firepit one time and our neighbors(the mean ones and my kids know who I am talking about) actually called the fire department and the firemen came in their fire truck and came back and told us someone had complained. They seemed kind of sheepish telling us and we knew who had complained.  Well, it turned out we needed a screen on our firepit so we went right out and bought a whole new little fire stove with a screen for outdoors and had a fire and roasted marshmallows the next day and hoped our neighbors would call the fire department again. I know, that is probably not a nice thought, but you have to know these neighbors.  We have lived by them for 35 years and they have never been nice to us.  But, back to smells.  Wood burning makes me think of Autumn also.  I love the smell.  I would have a campfire every single day on cool days and just sit and look at the flames.  Now with our new stove, we can do it without getting in trouble.  The dogs stretch out near the fire and warm themselves. They like it as much as David and I do.

   Winter brings the smells of pine and snow.  There is a particular smell on a snowy day.  If something can smell cold, it is snow.  Winter is when I bring out most of my candles and burn them every day.  Sometimes my house smells like chocolate, and sometimes like pumpkin spice, and sometimes like honey buttered rolls, and sometimes like patchouli.  Some people hate the smell of candles burning and I hate not having them burning.  If you come to my house, you will have to warn me so I won't burn a candle while you are here. 

     Smells make you thing of certain people. When I smell caramel corn or horehound, I think of my dad.  He loved making caramel corn on cold winter days, When we kids had been on Bond's hill sledding,we would come home to dad's caramel corn  It would still be warm and sticky and gooey and we ate big bowls of it.  It's one of the only things to eat I remember my dad making.  My dad always had horehound to suck on also.  A couple of years ago I had trouble with my throat and found that horehound helped.  You can buy it at the Goodwill store.  Really. It's not used or anything.

  Think about the smells that bring back memories to you.  I have many.  Too many to mention in one blog.  It is wonderful most times to be blessed with a good sense of smell. I won't even begin to tell you about the wonderful smell of a baby's head.  If they could bottle that they'd make a fortune.

  Here's to wonderful smells and memories that go with them.  Bye.


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