Banana bread was one of those things I always meant to make but never got around to. We would put bananas in the freezer and inevitably forget about them. I have tossed so many bananas into the yard waste I can’t even remember. Part of […]
My husband has wanted a fire pit ever since I can remember and once we moved into our house we knew we would get one. Last year we never got around to it but a few days ago we decided to take the plunge. We ordered it from Amazon when they were having a lightening deal on it so it was a decent price. It called a Solo Stove and is supposed to cut way down on the amount of smoke it releases. The fire pit can also be used on a deck without damaging it which is nice since our deck takes up most of the flat area in our yard. Just to be safe we put our heat shield from the grill underneath it and aside from the gigantic spider that went running there was no damage to our deck.
The little kids loved playing with it while they were waiting for dinner. They kept stacking the wood and moving it all about which was hilarious. Our son loves anything mechanical so he spent a lot of time trying to figure out the wood holder and how the fire pit was put together. Our three year old “pealed” the wood for us and rearranged it so that it was just so. It was great fun and luckily they understood (mostly) when we lit it on fire that it was hot and they were not to go near it. We still had a grown up watching them at all times once it was lit since you can’t ever be careful enough with little kids and fire.
The wood we used was from extra large branches that fell during the first major wind storm we had in our new house about a month after we moved in. We cut the larger branches up and stacked them and they worked pretty well for our fire pit. Most of my neighbors sent their branches to the yard waste bin but I was in the back yard super excited about all the free wood we got. My husband probably thought I was slightly nuts being out there pregnant and insisting he cut the branches into manageable pieces instead of throwing it into the bin but my mind was on how we could use it later. The branches were a good size and burned for just the right amount of time we needed so it worked well plus we didn’t have to spend a bunch of money buying fire wood. If you have a place to burn it is a good idea to keep some wood around for emergencies. We lost power for a couple of days our first winter and it would have been really nice to have some seasoned wood to burn in our fireplace to keep the house semi-warm. Luckily my mother-in-law had power so we were able to hang out there once the house got too cold.
My husband lit it with some fat wood and we were ready to go. We shut the slider to keep the kids off the deck, ate dinner and then the fire was perfect for S’mores. Our kids love S’mores (and we do too). There is something magical about them. My childhood is filled with memories of being promised S’mores after a long day of working in the woods but somehow they rarely materialized. My husband and I are all about creating family memories and having a great time with the kids and I could never imagine promising something like that and then never following through.
I found these jumbo marshmallows at Target and some dark chocolate that is dairy-free for our daughter. Our son was given a chocolate free S’more so that he would definitely sleep tonight. Ha ha, I wonder how long that will work before he realizes he is the only one without chocolate. The jumbo marshmallows worked ok but they really were too big for our fire since it burned pretty hot while we were making them.
Somewhere in our house are some long skewers we bought many, many years ago to roast hot dogs in our fireplace at the townhouse during a power outage but they got lost in the move. Hopefully we can find them when we get some more cleaning in the garage done. We still have quite a few boxes that we are slowly sorting and unpacking. I would highly recommend not moving in a crazy disjointed manner while one of you is pregnant since it becomes impossible to pack properly for a three week close on the house you are selling with items being stored at 4 different locations while you live at your mother-in-law’s house during the closing of the house you are purchasing. Whew. It was enough stress to make me never want to move again.
There is some debate about the proper way to cook a S’more marshmallow but I fall firmly in the light it on fire camp. I love a little char on my marshmallows with a gooey center. Delicious!
The fire died down in about 2 hours from when we lit it. We did not add any wood to it and it ended up being the perfect amount of time for us. We got a chance to hang out on the deck as a family for a bit while the kids ate their S’mores and by the time they were ready for bath it had mostly died out.
We had a great time tonight and we are looking forward to a full summer of S’mores and chilling around the fire pit. Now off to buy hot dogs for tomorrow night!
We are having some dairy issues in our house so we are adapting our favorite recipes. One of my three year old’s favorite thing to make is Crispy Rice Bars. Since they normally use butter we had to adapt the recipe a bit by substituting out coconut oil.
You will need:
About 1.5 Tbsp. Coconut Oil
I bag of Marshmallows (minus a few for samples)
6 cups of crispy rice cereal
1-2 cups Dairy Free Chocolate Chips to taste (Kirkland ones are what we use)
11×7 or 9×13 baking dish
wax or parchment paper
Pam or any other cooking spray
Spray either the 11×7 or a 9×13 pan with Pam. If you want thick pieces use the 11×7 and if you prefer thinner pieces use the 9×13. I used an 11×7 for this recipe.
Scoop Coconut Oil into a microwave safe bowl.
Add the marshmallows and microwave until soft. I checked in on them after a minute then put them back in for 30 more seconds.
Meanwhile measure out your chocolate chips and place into a microwave safe dish.
Measure 6 cups of crispy rice into a large bowl and pull the marshmallow mixture out of the microwave.
Put the chocolate chips in the microwave for 60 seconds and leave them there until you have completed the next step.
Stir the melted marshmallows and coconut oil into the crispy rice and immediately press into your greased pan with either wax paper or parchment paper sprayed with Pam.
Check on your chocolate chips. Be careful pulling them out of the microwave if you use a measuring cup because the handles can get very hot. If the chocolate chips stir easily into melted chocolate they are ready, if not put them back in for 30 seconds and check again. Once the chocolate chips are nicely melted spread them evenly on top of your crispy rice treats.
If you want at this step you can press candy into the chocolate to make a design or just for fun. We have used M&Ms in the past and my daughter loved it!
Let cool until the chocolate hardens and enjoy!