Home "smell"??? - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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Old 01-02-2010, 04:21 PM
 
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Definitely. it is one of the reasons i am excited to move to our new house (oh so soon) because the house we own currently has always smelled weird to me. I get used to it, but even leaving for the day and coming back, i notice it and it distracts me. We've done a lot of renovation, so if it were walls/carpets I would have expected it to be gone by now, but still it lingers. Friends swear that don't smell it, and they happily come have playgroup here, so I'm assuming it's not bad, but I'm ready for a different smelling house.

Also, I think I categorize houses by what they make me think of, not necessarily the smell itself. M's house smells like bustle and joy - someone is always running and laughing. G's house is calmer, and makes me think of tea and oil painting. S's house is books and light. C's house is knitting and music. Maybe I'm getting my senses mixed up there.

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Old 01-02-2010, 04:46 PM
 
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I'll take a home with a pet smell (though pet poop smell is a whole 'nuther story!) over a home with an artificial air freshener/febreeze smell any day!

I don't notice my own home's smell unless I've been gone a while. Not that it's a bad smell, just a smell I've never noticed.

I don't have an overly sensitive nose, though, but I am very good at distinguishing between smells and some do bother me usually because of a memory attached (for example, the humanities classroom at my school now smells exactly like my ex-boyfriend from the first time I was in college 12 years ago, and I didn't know if I could get over it LOL)

ETA: When I was a kid my family bought a house from an Indian woman and the house smelled overwhelmingly of curry, even the basement. We got used to it, and even though my parents never used curry themselves, YEARS later people would come to our house and ask if we've been using curry LOL.

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Old 01-02-2010, 04:54 PM
 
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I have the strong sense of smell too. I've been in a couple of houses that I couldn't stay in. My grandmother has some family members that stay with her and have trashed her house. I walked in one time, said hello and walked back out. I was early pregnant and the smell was making me dry heave. Artificial rose scents give me migraines. A lot of perfumes do as well.

We just moved and I hate the taste of out new city's tap water. I'm going to have to buy a filtering system. I've been drinking a lot of gatorade and coke (I know I know). I tried making tea and still taste it.

It's worse when I am pregnant.
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Old 01-02-2010, 05:12 PM
 
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I have a pretty strong sense of smell and always can smell other people's houses. I especially love my grandmother's house; it always smells like soap and something else--fresh and clean and bright. It makes me think of fluffy white towels and sunshine. When we moved into our house a couple of years ago, she gave us a couple of wing chairs, and I sat in them every day until the smell wore off. I love visiting her house.

We live in a log cabin, so it has a lovely smell of wood, especially when we've been away for a few days and the house has been all closed up.

I don't know of anyone whom I visit whose house smells bad, but all are distinct.
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Old 01-02-2010, 05:23 PM
 
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I'm always distressed over the way my home smells. We have four cats and I scoop the box at least twice a day, but it still smells like cat litter. I also clean things like crazy! If there is some secret to having pets and not smelling them, someone please tell me.

I also notice the smells in other people's homes. Pet smells don't really bother me since I love animals and have plenty of my own. I can't stand chemical scented air fresheners though! They make me feel so sick after awhile. My in-laws have some kind of arm and hammer fresh scent thing, and after we leave their house for the next 24 hours I have a pounding headache and tons of sinus drainage from smelling it.

One thing I've found that scents the home wonderfully is boiling cinnamon sticks and cloves in water. Sometimes in the winter my DH heats apple cider, bourbon, cloves, cinnamon sticks, and a bit of ginger on the stove for hours on low heat, and our house smells great for days!

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Old 01-02-2010, 05:57 PM
 
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Yes. My house has a distinct smell. There's always the tang of white vingear because I use it to clean EVERYTHING. And I bathe all our pets weekly for allergies so there's this strange orange oil smell (cat shampoo) that floats around. And I'm not getting the winter boot smell from 2 small kids not wearing socks in their boots when they go outside. It's an odd potpourri but I'd know I was home if I was blindfolded.

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Old 01-02-2010, 07:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you all for the replies. I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who notices home smells.

But now I'm really wondering if mine has an odor and I wish I could have all of you with sensitive noses over to tell me if my house is a fresh or funky smelling one!

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Old 01-02-2010, 07:27 PM
 
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I dread the smell at my MIL's house. It's part mothball, part fried turkey sausage (ugh!!!), and something else that I can't identify. It just about turns my stomach every time I walk in the door.

At least we don't have to stay there anymore. We stay at a hotel now. After staying overnight in the past, I would need to wash all of my clothes when we came home.

I wish my house had a better scent. It usually doesn't. Two cats and a fridge that needs to be cleaned out don't help. Our sinks always stink. They just need more daily maintenance than I'm up for. Dh is home with our kids more than I am, and he just doesn't care.
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Old 01-02-2010, 07:49 PM
 
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I'm always distressed over the way my home smells. We have four cats and I scoop the box at least twice a day, but it still smells like cat litter. I also clean things like crazy! If there is some secret to having pets and not smelling them, someone please tell me.
We have had up to three cats at one time and we keep the litter boxes in the basement. We put a cat flap on the basement door. Our basement is gross gross GROSS so it really has no other use. It is also full of the biggest wolf spiders on the planet and where mice get in. Making the cats go down there for their potty needs helps keep them on patrol for spiders and mice The basement already smells WAY worse than cat litter so it all works out. The only problem is that now a HUMAN has to go down there to clean the boxes
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Old 01-02-2010, 08:04 PM
 
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I'm also keyed in to peoples house smell. Wish I knew what my own smelled like. When I come in after a while being gone it just smells kind of earthy and a bit musty. We are working on replacing carpet with harwood so hopefully that will change.

My grandmothers old house always smelled soooo good. I could never identify it (other than a mustiness in her basement that smelled sweet) but my friends all said that it smelled like apples. And she smells good too like apples and white musk.

My cousins house smells like a health food store. Really fresh and woody and all the hand me downs I get from her smell like wood. Not really cedar or pine but something like it.

I really hate it when people use potporri or candles or plug ins. They really assult my nose. Although when we bought our first house one of the reasons was because it smelled so good. Like coconut. All the others we looked at smelled rotten. So I guess that coconut plug in they used really was a selling point!

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Old 01-02-2010, 08:46 PM
 
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I have a really sensitive nose - I used to freak out high school classmates by telling them what alcohol they drank over lunch hour.

When I'm pregnant, it's miserable. I spend a lot of my time feeling nauseous and/or offended by the odors.

Most homes have a recognizable odor for me -

Grandma M's was roast beef, potatoes, and old books
Grandma D's was cigarette smoke, perfume, and basement mildew (not bad tho)
My parents - wood smoke and cigars (fainter now as Dad hasn't smoked for years)
Our house is 110 years old - it has a dusty wood smell to it, whatever was cooked recently, and also the smell of my Mrs. Meyers lemon hand soap (mmmm).

Scent is a big deal for me, it features in many of my memories/associations for people. Usually in a positive way. I do have one friend who wears a musky cologne which is sickly-sweet at the same time. I associate it with him, but don't like it at all. He loves it though, and I know my sense of smell is unusual so probably most people don't have such a pronounced reaction to it as I do.

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Old 01-02-2010, 09:56 PM
 
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There are only some houses that I can pick up a smell in, others no. Water on the other hand, I am very picky about which water I will drink. It tastes and smells different! At any given time I have 3-5 water bottles in my car because I refuse to fill up my water bottle at most places.

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Old 01-02-2010, 09:59 PM
 
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This is a very interesting thread. I am enjoying all the posts.

My dd has inherited the blood hound gene from me, I guess. She would run into her room and cry piteously behind the closed door whenever dh would cook what she calls, "stinky rice" a jambalaya mix of rice and sea food. Now she's old enough to leave the house when he cooks it.

I had a friend that could tell when a woman had a visit from Aunt Flo. This made me very uncomfortable around him.
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Old 01-02-2010, 09:59 PM
 
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Old 01-02-2010, 10:22 PM
 
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This is a very interesting thread. I am enjoying all the posts.
I agree!

I'm another one with a SuperNose. I smell most things really strongly and when pg, it was way worse. I can almost always tell what someone had for lunch or to drink. Another time when my nose is on overdrive is when I have a migraine. Most people get light auras...I guess I get a "smell aura".

I totally agree that houses all have a distinct smell. I had a friend when I was little who was deaf and also very sensitive to smells...she always told us our house was stinky when she'd come over to play. But it was nice and clean; it just smelled different than her house.

Smells definitely trigger memories too. When we moved into this house, one of the things I loved about it was that the basement smells like my grandparents' house... a mixture of old cigarette smoke of a certain brand (not sure which one, just that it was the same one) and wine and musty house and coffee. A very comforting smell!

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Old 01-02-2010, 10:46 PM
 
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I still prefer the smell of "my" brand of cigarettes, even though I've been quit for 12 years. Most other brands smell icky.

It took us about 2 weeks to find all the air fresheners when we moved in. I think there were 12 glade plug-ins. I hate artificial air freshener scent. Especially in commercial bathrooms. Ugh. My old work had a watermelon scented one: melon + poo = bad.

I like wood smoke smell - and the feeling of wood stove heat is so nice! Dry and over warm feels so good to me. I liked radiator heat when I lived in Minnesota for the same dry, overwarm feeling.

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Old 01-02-2010, 10:55 PM
 
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I will be honest and say no matter how well someone cleans if they have animals I still smell the "animal" smell. It doesnt matter if there is no litter box in the house or not, I can smell animals.
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Old 01-02-2010, 11:17 PM
 
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i think everyone's house has a smell, not bad just unique.

On the topic of cat litter smells, I have no ammonia smell since we bought this system. I love it.

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Old 01-02-2010, 11:30 PM
 
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I always notice each homes smell as well as I notice a persons smell. In fact, I just commented to a friend the other day that I liked her smell.

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Old 01-03-2010, 03:18 AM
 
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I am a CPS worker and I do assessments so I'm in 2-3 different homes each week. Most homes have a smell, not necessarily a bad smell but a smell nonetheless. The worst is the homes where people smoke..... makes me want to go right home and have a shower. Even if they do not smoke with me there, that smell is just in everything.:Puke I know my house likely smells like our dog, I don't notice it but I think it is because I am used to it. I try to burn candle so when we have company, it is not as noticeable.... that is my intention anyways!

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Old 01-03-2010, 04:54 AM
 
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Sorta on the topic...when I worked drive-thru at a fast food place I could really smell car interiors. Seemed like the car air whooshed into the drive-thru window. So I always open both my windows to try to minimize the air vacuum effect when I go through drive-thru's. Some cars are really stinky.
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Old 01-03-2010, 04:00 PM
 
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Most houses I've been in smell like scented candles. However, one of my DH's friends house smells gross, and I can't stand it. It smells like bad food, and it probably is.

We have 2 big dogs and I've asked if our house smells, everyone has always told us no. They do smell when they get bathed, wet dog smell, but that goes away once they become dry.
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Old 01-03-2010, 04:39 PM
 
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Most houses we go to have a distinct smell, not always bad, sometimes off-putting. Animals do make a big difference. It's not like an odor that I'm constantly smelling, but more like something I notice when we walk in the door, and then my nose gets used to it.

With so many little kids (and thus lots of dirt, pee, and poop) I've often wondered how our house smells to others. That's why I have a good stock of scented candles that I burn often, and in the warm weather keep windows open and air moving all the time.
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Old 01-03-2010, 04:45 PM
 
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The house of some of my friends from my teenage years was just infused with garlic smell. *Everything* smelled like garlic. Even their clothes (they ate so much garlic I think it was oozing from their pores. ). I love garlic, so the smell didn't bother me but it was very strong. They actually also happened to be hoarders, so the super-strong garlic smell was probably a lot better than the alternative.
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Old 01-03-2010, 10:22 PM
 
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My first boyfriend smelled of garlic and I still swoon when I catch a wiff. Onions are another matter.
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