Monday, April 12, 2010


 A couple of years ago my granddaughter remarked that, "It smells like a grandma in here". "What does a grandmother smell like", I asked? Well, she couldn't really give me a definitive answer, so I am still wondering, does a grandmother smell musty? Does a grandmother smell like lavender and rose water? Does a grandmother smell like sugar cookies? Naturally I prefer a pleasant fragrance of flowers and herbs or sugar and cinnamon. 

I have tried to recall what my grandmothers smelled like and nothing really comes to mind. I have all kinds of good feelings that surface, but no particular fragrance. My mother, on the other hand, was a perfume junkie and usually smelled of Giorgio or Chanel #5. Everyone in my family remembers that and can be taken back to her memory in a heartbeat with just a whiff.
What do I smell like? Do I offer an unforgettable odor? When my granddaughter remarked that it smelled like a grandma was she referring to me? She would admit nothing! But last week I got an e-mail from her saying that she took some children that she was babysitting over to their grandmother's house and was offered a treat of Diet Coke and Hershey's Kisses. She wanted me to know that she immediately thought of me. I smiled of course, because if my grandchildren know anything about me, other than quilts, it is Diet Coke and Hershey Kisses! I feel quite better now!


Rebeccah Louise said...

Grandmas smell soft and sugary and like musty little cherry blossoms.

Except any time I smell Babalou perfume I think of Grandmas, like you said.

But mostly soft.
Grandma's smell soft.

Valentina said...

My grandma always smelled of baked bread... :)
I still keep some of her treads and notions in zip-lock bags and love to smell her once in a while, takes me right back!
Funny, isn't it?

sewprimitive karen said...

My one grandmother who was very ladylike smelled of lavender and I associate her with very clean rooms and she always had these bakery-bought sugar cookies with lemon out on this little screened-in stoop under a screened dome.

paulette said...

Hi Marcie!!
Loved your posting today!!

I am still 'perfecting' my smell and waiting...and waiting...for all those grand babies to be born!!
:o) Enjoy those grandkids, Marcie~ you lucky lady!!

Annette said...

I love the story of the diet Coke and Hershey's kisses. I remember how it smelled walking into my grandmother's homes. Usually delicious food.

Gypsy Quilter said...

That would make a wonderful title for a cook book / memory book. Someone should invent a cookie perfume for modern day grannies to wear. I seems few have time to bake cookies - LOL.

Libby said...

The smells that make me think of my Grandma are Ivory soap, Noxema and clothes dried on the line *s*

onlymehere said...

No smells bring back my mother or grandmother either. I've never thought about it. However, men's cologne and lime bring back memories of my old boyfriend. Hmmm, not sure my husband would like to know that, lol! He smelled great all the time.

Vivian said...

Lovely story today, Marcie. I never knew my one grandmother and I saw the other one only in the middle of crowded family gatherings, so no special memories there.
But my great-aunt Rose who lived nearby was like a substitute grandma. I remember the smell of baking cinnamon rolls every Saturday morning, boiling anise candy at Christmas, the mustiness of her lovely begonias on the north side of her house, and her smelly old dog. Three positive smells out of 4 -- that's pretty good! I miss Aunt Rose.

Jenni said...

One of my Grandmas always smelled of Oil of Olay mosituriser, which always reminds me of her. The other Grandma didn't have a smell that I can recall, but we are always quoting her, so we remember her that way.

Janet said...

That's so cute. I can't remember that far back very well but the house smelled like the old treadle I used to play on or the piano.

W. Latane Barton said...

Hi Marcie,
that was a very good question. I don't remember my mother having a particular 'smell' but my children (her grands) say my house smells like their grandmothers house. hmmmm. Wonder what it is?

AnnieO said...

My mom and I like the same perfume (Opium by YSL) and when my nieces and nephews hug me, they say I smell like Granny. Well, I might as well, since I look so much like her too!

Take it as a compliment that you have a memorable scent :)


my great grandmas smelled like flowery perfumes, usually lilac. but one of my grandmas always smelled like Chanel #5 and/or wintergreen lifesavors. The one ucky smell I remember from her house is the days when she would bake tuna casserole. ugh! And my other grandma usually smelled like baked goods or flowery perfume.
but mostly grandmas smell like love and hugs!

dianne said...

my grandkids say that i smell like baby lotion (Johnson and Johnson's) and cinnamon ... i'll take that as a compliment!

quiltmom said...

MY grandmother always wore Avon perfumes, used dove soap and her clothes smelled of hanging outside on the line. My son probably would say that my mom smells of fresh bread, lasagna and pickles( three things that she makes that he loves)
Smell is a powerful memory and I certainly associate smells of the farm with both of my grandparents.
A fun post Marcie.

julieQ said...

Vanilla...that is what Grandma's smell like in my book! I so remember my mother's scent...heaven to me.

Polly said...

Of course Baba Lou was Giorgio, and grandma Patch was rose hand lotion in my memory. You probably smell like fabric softner. Sometimes your house smells like potpourri. What ever your smell is I'll miss it when your gone. Don't go anywhere! Kathryn recently told her friend James that boys stink and he was very offended and she said "not you James, grandpa's stink." at least grandma's smell good.

Mark said...

Hi Marcie
Speaking of smelly grandmothers, my new kid's book "Grandma Stinks!" is getting some wonderful attention from kids and adults alike. It's really an irreverent and funny take on tolerance and unconditional love. Enjoy!