scents of the holidays: what are you favorites?

(You guys know I’m a science nerd, right?) I loved teaching my students about scent and memory because it’s something they can relate to. I mean, it’s pretty cool to be able to explain to them why a specific smell evokes certain memories…

Usually, the memory is linked to the FIRST time you encountered the smell. That means most connections are made during our childhood. Sometimes you can’t recall a specific memory so the scent just gives you an overall feeling or changes your mood (like the smell of rain makes me happy). Or–do you hate a certain smell or does a particular scent make you uncomfortable? Maybe it’s associated with something unpleasant from when you were a kid!

christmas tree

I find that a lot of my scent and memory connections are from the holidays. Maybe because of all the baking and cooking! And all the time spent with family making awesome memories.

I just played a fun game with my husband… I had him randomly say scents related to the holiday season and I wrote down the first thing that came to mind–and the memories associated with that. Try it!


pine: Christmas trees… the fun picking out a tree, decorating it with my brother, the excitement of getting a new ornament every year, and lying under the tree as a kid

egg nog: yummmm… cute, tiny holiday glasses and Christmas Eve with the family

vanilla: baking… making at least 5 different kinds of Christmas cookies with my mom every year

cinnamon: cozy, cuddling, candles… the smell reminds of the entire holiday season and I pull out my cinnamon/spice scented candles as soon as it gets cold outside!

burning wood: cuddling up by the fireplace

snow: bundling up… building snow forts at the end of the driveway and going sledding with my brother

coffee: comfort (that’s a reaction from current times, not childhood, haha)… my first connection with coffee during the holidays though is when I was a kid and it meant waitingggg and waiting for the adults to finish their coffee after dinner so we could open our presents! Always waiting on the coffeeeeee.

And now? I totally understand. How many ways can I say I love coffee. I’d die without coffee. Coffee makes me happy. Sadly, the Dunkin Donuts near us closed awhile ago (sob sob!)… but thankfully the Dunkin’ Donuts packaged coffee is sold at our local grocery store!

dunkin donuts coffee

Never had Dunkin’ Donuts coffee?!?!? “One taste and you’ll understand.” I remember the days when I hated coffee (oh, silly girl), when I first had coffee in graduate school, and now how it’s much more than just a good drink–maybe that seems odd, but coffee is comforting to me. I love curling up on the couch with a great cup. I love meeting girlfriends for coffee. I love catching up with family around the table with a hot cup. Mmmmm.

If you haven’t tried Dunkin’ Donuts, you should check out their seasonal tastes, too. Available for a limited time: mocha mint, pumpkin spice, and gingerbread cookie (complete with gift tags for gift-giving and stocking-stuffing!). They also have an original blend and decaf.

dunkin donuts seasonal coffee

 I’ll be serving Dunkin’ Donuts Gingerbread Cookie coffee (sugar and spice, yumm!) at our Christmas party–what about you?!

First photo: credit to Joe Buckingham on Flickr.
Thank you to Dunkin’ Donuts® packaged coffee at grocery for being a sponsor. I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective. All opinions expressed here are my own.


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