Monday, September 8, 2014

The Scent Of A Memory

I've heard a hundred times that smells can trigger memories better than any of the other senses. I fully supper this theory because nothing can spark a memory of some obscure time for me like a smell can.

For instance, I spent a lot of time with my great-grandma and grandpa when I was younger. They babysat me a lot and when I first started going to school I would get off the bus at their house and spend all afternoon there until my mom would come and pick me up after work. I was a child when I knew my great-grandma, so I have a child's memory of her, but in my eyes, she was the greatest and boy oh boy did she love me!

there's no editing on this picture. this is an authentic scan of an authentic polaroid picture from approx 1992-1993.

She used to have this face powder that she would wear and sometimes she'd even put a little on me! Any time I went into her bathroom, especially when I was really young, I would play with the face powder. It was in a really pretty container and had one of those little poofs in it and basically begging for a little girl to play with it!

Now if I ever smell the scent of that face powder I always think of her. It's odd sometimes because occasionally I'll smell it and it's all of a sudden like I'm right back in her house with her and she's catching me in her bathroom playing with her powder. The memory is so vivid!

Smells bring out the memories in me.

Which brings me to yesterday. First of all, yesterday was my momma's birthday. Shout out of my pretty momma.

Yesterday my family and I all went out to breakfast for her birthday and then I decided to go on a leisurely 3 mile walk around campus.

It was a beautiful day yesterday and I am so lucky to be living in Bloomington, Indiana this time of year! Campus is just always so beautiful!

Anyway, then I went home and opened up all of my windows and quickly finished my big fall cleaning I had started in my apartment on Friday. Just knocking out things left and right on my September Goal list! I had football on the TV and was watching it and checking scores anytime I was in the room, but mostly just listening to the game. I put bbq chicken in the crockpot for the week and then finally sat down to organize my messy email inbox.

Then I smelled someone grilling.

And it was SO WEIRD because all of a sudden all of the smells just came together as one thing. The scent of upcoming Fall, the bbq chicken in the crockpot, the lingering smell of windex, the scent of fresh cut grass from my neighbors, and the grill all came together and brought back an old junior high school memory.
A memory of me, sitting at our dining room table finishing homework, while my stepdad watches football, my mom's cooking in the kitchen, after she had spent all day cleaning, and the windows open, so you could smell the grass from my grandpa's mowing job earlier in the day.

It was so weird and it was such a simple memory. Such an average, every day memory. But it hit me like a ton of bricks and I could remember everything so clearly!

Anyone else have a smell that just takes them back? 


  1. Isn't it great what things can trigger a memory?! I love it. My great-grandmother always smelt like a certain fabric softener & it was special to her so when I smell it from time to time, I like to think that she's there next to me.

    By the way, I had that same swimming pool. :)

    Mandie ~

  2. I love smelllsssss! When my mom makes fried chicken it immediately makes me think of my great-grandma and her elaborate cooking every time we visited her. The way my dad cooks thanksgiving turkey makes me think of Hawaii because of the specific smoke (and banana leaves...) is how they did it there and I could just sit there all day and smell those things. Someone needs to figure out how to jar smells.... other than candles..... this is getting rambly.

  3. Yes! This happens to me occasionally and it's the craziest feeling. There's this cologne that my first boyfriend used to wear, and any time I pass a man wearing it or even go by the cologne counter in a department store, it takes me right back to being 15!

  4. I love all the fall smells. Fall has always been the time of the year when great things happen, so I associate the smells/feeling with a lot of good memories :)

  5. I love when that happens! There's a specific wood smell that I rarely find, but when I do it immediately takes me back to my grandpa's house. It reminds me of eating popsicles with my cousin and sister and exploring his backyard with them.

  6. My dad wears Drakkar and I always think of him when I smell it. Whenever he uses my car, my hands smell like him because of the steering wheel. It is comforting!

  7. Sandalwood is a scent that will always remind me of my dad. I think it's partially because he wears cologne in that scent family and because he's a carpenter. I will literally describe something as "smelling like my dad" LOL. But there's something about the smell no matter where I am that comforts and calms me, reminding me of how my dad was always be "safe place" growing up.


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