Monday Listicles – The Scents of Well-Being

The one good thing about Mondays is that NorthWestMommy diligently offers up a new fan- influenced prompt, geared towards the positive aspects of existence. This week is 10 favorite smells. Like Ms NWM herself I tried to keep the list from representing all foodstuffs. Unlike her, well, you’ll see.

1. Fresh air. Not much of it around here. When I go to the mountains, even just the suburbs, I can sense the difference especially since it usually means more serene surroundings – since city life is as much soul-crushing as it is physically polluting. Fresh air works up the appetite for one thing. That leads me to the next one.

2. Barbecue. Yes I plainly see the irony of longing for and appreciating the outdoors, then polluting it just to get extra char on my burger/hot dog/ steak/ vegetables.

3. Dried flowers. the scent is as strong, if not longer lasting, than when they are in bloom. Except for honey suckles, which are wonderful when they are around. I do not have much exposure to actual full gardens (see #1).

4. Candles. Not just a source of mood lighting, many candles are scented, which can go along with a seasonal or intentional purpose. This is a tricky area, since candle scents can be overpowering or smell more like food than they really should. I have found that Crystal Journey candles are my favorites; clean light and refreshing, and if you are into meditating/ spiritual practices, you will likely find what you need here. Or get me something. Just puttin’ it out there.

5. Indian food/curry/basmati rice. Sure you can get that nice aroma from the cart food, or a divey little place in Curry Row NYC, but when you get those fresh ground seasonings in a nice rich gravy, accompanied by basmati rice with actual saffron, inhale deeply and you will reach a dreamy state. All this before you take the first bite!

6. Garlic/onions frying. This gears more towards my Italian roots. When I was younger, Sunday mornings usually meant waking up to this aroma wafting through the apartment. A good sauce takes time of course, and was an integral part of even bigger meals, like lasagna or stuffed shells. If it wasn’t our house cooking, then this was the first thing you would smell when walking into grandma’s house. Imagine if #4 came in this scent?!

7. Banana bread. I generally enjoy baking, and the aromas are great (especially when vanilla and/or brown sugar are ingredients!), but the smell of banana bread just seems to equal warmth. Pulling open a muffin is likeable to a blossoming flower.

8. Brewing tea. Whether it’s with regular leaves, green tea, spicy chai (see #5 for a 1-2 punch!), or ones blended with herbs like sage or rosemary, every aroma is clean and refreshing. Your senses will steep in the smells and the flavors.

9. Hugo cologne. I first bought this in college. I know, you grow up and move on to other scents, but this reminds me of my turtleneck sweaters and cold weather in general, as well as my more carefree days (ok that’s not completely true, college is stressful!) I never could wear it during warm weather. I always make sure to own even just a small bottle to wear from time to time.

10. Cats. When I bury my face in their cute fuzzy bellies, I get their scent. Then they wash themselves immediately afterwards since they have MY scent. Litter boxes- eh, not so much a fan of THAT part. Like babies, you wonder how something so cute can create something so diabolic. It’s the balance of nature; just keep repeating that to yourself as you clean it up. Or just burn a candle!


Filed under Life, Lists, Monday Listicles, Shameless Promotions, Writing

19 responses to “Monday Listicles – The Scents of Well-Being

  1. Banana bread–YES. And my sister’s cat honestly smells like cinnamon. His is the most unique cat smell I’ve ever smelt!

  2. I am totally with you on the garlic and onions frying; that’s the start of so many good meals. Although I’d have to go with fresh flowers myself, particularly peonies.

  3. As much as I hate for garlic and onions to get in my hair – I LOVE the smell of it cooking. I’d prefer to be able to open up the house though and not go to bed smelling like I work at a hibachi place.

  4. But which of those smells like victory?
    Fresh cut grass, on a warm wummer day.
    (Even with allergies, I still love that one.)

  5. “Garlic/onions frying”—Love that smell too! Just had it in my house last night. Chicken Cacciatore. Yum.

  6. #6 – love it. Just not two days later when the house still smells like it!

  7. If I were to do this we would probably have the same list. Great post.

  8. Oh, I love banana bread, now, if I could only get over the smashy consistency to bake some…

  9. Yes to fresh air. Love getting out of the city and visiting my folks on the farm. Okay maybe not all those farm smells are so fresh LOL

  10. Even when garlic and onion smell permeate my clothes, I like their smell. Freshly brewed coffee, bread in the oven, and bacon are lovely scents….and yes, the smell of ripe yellow mangoes. It’s as close to summery heaven as one can get. 🙂

  11. I originally added banana bread to my list but had to to juggle around cinnamon in a toaster, bread baking, and chocolate chip cookies in the oven. Hmmmm….I can smell it right now.

  12. I agree with many of these on your list – onions sauteed in butter drive the kids out of their rooms to find out what’s cooking (they start my green chili chicken enchiladas :)) Fresh air – yeah, don’t get much of that in the city. When we get to the top of a mountain, we get a nice view of the smog cloud blanketing the city. Ick. (Can’t imagine what NYC would be like!) #4, 7, 8 – check. And 10 – absolutely. I’m a total cat person too (like you, not so much their litter box, though.)

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