Family Friday: Smell the Roses

Every Friday we will share some ideas on how to improve your family values or life. The hope is that as you end a busy week and enter the weekend with your family that you can reflect on these ideas and connect as a family through them. If you ever come across something you think would be great to share, please share with us on our Contact Us page.

Earlier in the week we went to the Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden at the Dallas Arboretum with some friends. In part of the garden they have this section with a sign that says “Pet Me”. It offers a few different plants for children to touch and explore. I was showing my daughter a mint plant and she ripped off a leaf (OOPPS, sorry!) but I used it as a learning experience to show her how the leaf had great texture but moreover it SMELLED good. She is just started to understand the ability to breath in through your nose and smell something (did you realize you had to learn that????). She walked around for over 30 minutes holding her mint leaf to her nose smelling it as she played. She was embracing the new smell and I think the next time we go to the garden she will probably have more memories of the smell than what she actually did there on that trip.

So it made me staSplashParkrt thinking, do I have memories tied to just a smell? YES! There been times in my life where I remember the smell of something and not much else. There are also times when I have smelled something and immediately been taken back in time to a certain place and event. I wonder also how many smells do I take for granted and how many smells will I miss in a few years time. The smell of sugar sweetness after my kids enjoy snow cones and cotton candy (and get most of it on themselves), the smell of chlorine from swimming with friends or playing at the splash park, the smell of the German potatoes we can only get at the Addison Oktoberfest, the smell of my husband making his amazing scrambled eggs, etc.

We recently had a beloved dog pass away in our house and it was pretty hard on me. She Trevawas the difficult dog, ever since we rescued her we had issues, she never could quite hold her bladder and she had terrible skin allergies that made for a very stinky dog. We always knew she was smelly and tried to do things about it but the smell was there. After she passed I washed all of our blankets and bedding and such and immediately notice that the house started to smell better. About a month after she passed I ran the vacuum….wow, it was like our sweet Treva had come back. Gosh it STUNK, my eyes teared up, not because of sadness but it just smelled so bad. Then I broke down remembering our sweet, stinky girl and was so thankful in a weird kind of way to have smelled her one last time. I think my heart needed that.

Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni, a beloved Indian poet and author, has said ““Each day has a color, a smell.” So my challenge to you over the next few days, is to embrace the smell of the day! Embrace the smell of the little things in life, the bad and the good smells. Sit down and just take in the little smells of your children, your spouse, your house, the activities you do. Make memories through your sense of smell and enjoy the little things in life. Also, walk your children through various smelling activities. When you are out and about encourage your family to share what they smell and what they think about those smells. Connect through your noses!

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