Smells are powerful – a scent can come our way that we haven’t breathed in years and instantly we are transported in time to a distant memory…

I have a favorite rest stop on Highway 10 along the Florida panhandle where the pine stands are thick. I get out of the car and fill my lungs. Often the air in this region is scented with tall pines. It is the smell of home – at least for me. When a scent says “this is where you were born and raised” then it’s familiar, like an old friend.

Soup bubbling in the pot, apple pie baking, strawberries about to be smothered in whipped cream – just recounting them makes your stomach grumble. Citrus blossoms, red roses, and gardenias are creation’s fragrant bouquet.

A baby’s soft skin, the smell of sweaty little boys coming in from play, a husband’s shirts – these bring a smile to your face. Cotton sheets fresh off the line or out of the dryer have a unique smell and elicit a contented sigh. Oh, and the smell of rain – who doesn’t wonder at that wonderful scent straight from heaven!

My mother was a hairdresser and she always said the smell of a hair salon was her favorite, funny my daughter loves that also. These days it’s my mother’s perfume that makes me stop. She’s gone and for the first couple of years her clothes still hung in the closet – when I would visit I would go bury my face in her dresses. Now all has been packed up and given away. Yet her scent still lingers on keepsakes I brought home: scarves, a soft throw, notes she wrote. Happening upon one of these catches me off guard, and suddenly the woman who taught me so much and loved me so dearly caresses my cheek. I close my eyes and long for the sweet voice and old stories.

God blessed us with the sense of smell; it has a way of bringing peace in the chaos of life…


  1. inhale…I can smell fresh bread. That was what we smelled on Saturday twice a month. When mom baked bread, she made cinnamon and raisin buns, dinner rolls and loaf bread. The whole day was a process of bread rising with yeast smells to the eventual baking.
    I also remember the smells of honeysuckle blooms. Home was right around the corner.


  2. My favorite scents come in blues and greens; they are the scents of nature, especially water. I love the scent of the reeds of the river, freshly mown grass, the ocean, rainstorms… 🙂


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