The smell of smoke

One of my favorite things about our new house is that we have two wood burning fireplaces. I love the smell of woodsmoke. It reminds me of the outdoors and of my childhood.

Until I left for college, I had never lived anywhere that didn’t have a wood stove, so if I was outside as a little girl, and it was sort of chilly, odds are good that I could smell the fire.

Woodsmoke smells like sweaters and rolling in crunchy leaves. Like the oil-gas mixture that runs the chainsaw. Like the smell of cut wood. Like the flannel and chamois shirts my dad wore.

Woodsmoke smells like listening to quietly falling snow. Like the smell of being outside in fresh air, and then like the smell of coming in from the cold when supper is cooking…beef, tomatoes, onions, garlic. Or like coming inside when Mom is making cookies.

I hope that the smell of woodsmoke permeates my children’s memories until it is deeply embedded as one of those smells that just takes them back. I hope it brings them back to this house, to us, to food, to me.

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