Fire Pit

Mon 4th, Jun, 2012

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Hey g’day ladies, wanna see my fire pit?  Well it’s been a wet and busy end to the week on the beaches, to be honest my garden needed the rain and the cooler weather was the purrrfect excuse for some old fashioned English sausages, hot chocolate, marshmallows on sticks and a fire pit.

We use our fire pit a lot, during most of the year, I love sitting around it all rugged up in the winter but it’s also nice in the Spring and Autumn to just light it late into the evening as it cools down and somehow, a house feels a home when there is a fire to sit around outside…it’s just so cosy and comforting it’s ridiculous

…and since I instagrammed our fire pitting recently I have had quite a lot of questions about it..where we got it, how it works for us and is it worth it?   So I thought I’d let you know about ours and  what I wanted from a fire pit

My requirements from a fire pit were these :

to be able to move it to different spots at different times of the year
to be easy to clean
to give off lots of heat
to be a classic shape
to be able to fit five people around it comfortably

Originally we were planning to build a fire pit in the ground, our garden is pretty big and so we have the room for that, but once I looked into it and asked around a bit many people said that in their experience a portable one was a great idea and worked really well, it meant that you could move it until you found a perfect place in the garden (that’s exactly how it worked for us, before it was just off the deck nearer to the cottage, now it is down out side the Summer House)

then I looked into a Chiminea and after quite bit of searching found one that was the right colour and fit for here and then I learnt that while great these are no the best at giving off heat

and so the hunt for a fire pit began with those criteria above in mind, this was not easy because many of them are very modern looking…in the end I settled on this one at Bunnings  


I preferred the look of this one, and it’s half the price, but I heard that the heat given off was not quite as much with this style, plus it looked a bit less safe for kiddos to me – turns out now that I have sat around one of these with friends and it’s good too…



I was also semi concerned about safety (remember we don’t have littlies) and so wanted one with a grill – turns out I was probs over cautious and we haven’t used the cover too much but if I had younger children around I would be thinking twice about using this until they were in bed (it’s low to the ground) though the surround, legs and base are all surprisingly cool (we were worried about Barley around this initially but turns out he has been fine with close supervision of course)


The best thing about this is it’s a great family thing, especially for our age kiddos, I LOVE sitting round a fire outside under the stars and it seems this has rubbed off on the Beach Cottage Crew…so we have a bit of a routine going now – the boys get the fire going while the girls get the sausages etc ready …most times we do this I have learnt to keep the ‘cooking’  bit very simple this normally involves throwing something one bowl like chilli or curry into the slow cooker and then bringing this out to the table outside by the fire pit, handing out bowls and serving ourselves, no mess, minimal clear up or going even simpler and even more diy and just doing sausages and rolls….followed of course by toasting marshmallows

…of course with those rose tinted glasses I like to pop on the end of my nose at times I do have some fancy thoughts of fancy foods around this thing, all happy and singing around the camp fire style, all Jamie Oliver cooking a fantastic meal over a pile of sticks in the open air…this is where I admit not to doing that, although I have been known to throw my chicken packets on here and then sling them at the kiddos and that did go down exceedingly well, no I think the whole point of this is keeping it stress free…the eaters will be more than occupied with the delights of sitting around a fire and the awaiting gluttony of the marshmallows…the former bit should not be a burden on the cook…obviously if this is a gathering of friends you may want more than a sausage on a stick but if this is indeed intended as a round-off, a stress reliever after a busy weekend of family life then simple all the way..



I do make a tiny bit of effort with decor though, it’s hardly taxing to pop a few lanterns around and there is surely something soothing about the routine of going around lighting them as the fire begins to get going…



So,  a fire, a fire pit in Beach Cottage Land, well it just brings out the nice side of life and at 79 bucks cost per wear is looking pretty darn good right now


….if you have been thinking about getting one and have ummmmed and ahhhhed about it, which according to my inbox quite a few of you have, I would highly recommend one, even if you are on a tight budget I would consider it…but before you purchase just have a think about how you want to use it and where you want it to go – I am so pleased we didn’t build one – it’s nice to be able to clean it easily and put it away…

Beach Cottage ladies, there is something amazing about sitting under a deeply dark Australian midnight blue sky, sprinkled with stars, a hot chocolate laced with a little something special, watching your kiddos toasting marshmallows on the fire

see you next time sweet girls, I am on the tail-end of a stinking cold and am taking it easy for the next few days after a busy last week with sport and blog stuff…I am off to take Barley out for a walk by the beach…he’ll be blogging later



p..s sorry no new meal plan this week, I am going to pick one of these to use


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50 Responses to “Fire Pit”

  1. Becs says:

    Hi Sarah
    I would love one of these – but living in suburbia worry that the smoke might be a nuisance to the neighbours, causing them to complain. Do you find it to be any issue?

    • sarah says:

      actually no I don’t, obviously there is smoke but you can buy ‘smokeless’ (think that is what it is called) wood – once the initial smoke goes it’s hardly an issue at all so I think you would be ok x

  2. We have a box-shaped one from Bunnings and love, Sarah. In summer, we can even stick a planter pot in it! There is something about an open fire!

  3. the freckled minx says:

    We have a big square one that is set into a tiled table – got it from Amart of all places. In the summertime we fill it up with ice and put all the drinks in it. Wouldn’t be without it as we love it to bits……B:)

  4. Leah says:

    We have the same one as yours Sarah. We got it our Bunnings for $65. We love it too! My only thing with it is, you have to put it on concrete or dirt as we put it on our lawn and the lawn went brown and dead underneath it. Did you find that with yours? Leahx

    • sarah says:

      hmm no I didn’t but it’s mostly been on concrete/patio in our place… though we have used it on the grass and no issues with that…


  5. Amanda says:

    That’s my concern (well my husband’s) about killing the grass under. Does that happened after one use? Or do you have to repeatedly use it in the same spot to affect the lawn?

    • sarah says:

      Amanda that hasn’t been an issue for us but the comment above makes it seem as if you may need to put something under there if you are using it on the grass x

  6. Melinda says:

    Hi Sarah,
    we have a similar fire bowl and love it for all the reasons you do .
    Its a lovely way to turn an ordinary family night into something special and also fun when friends come over.
    Really like that it gets everyone outside, looking at the stars and sharing stories.

    With an entire week of rain rain and more rain forecast for here I dont think there’ll be much fire bowl action round these parts – I’ll just enjoy your photos until we can get outside again.

    Rest up and have a great day xx

    • sarah says:

      yes you are so right, everyone does go outside, no computers or tv and just talk…. or in my case, have too many Peronis and dance for my children on the lawn ;-)

      • Melinda says:

        hmmm a Peroni dance – Id like to see that !!
        Are you channelling Irish Dance/ Zorba the Greek or are we talking modern groover?
        You a funny lady !!

        as you say back to basics, family time and create some memories

  7. Neen says:

    I grew up with the ritual of lighting a fire on the farm, during school holidays with our cousins, baking potatoes and bananas with chocolate melted inside foil and goooey marshmellows too. AAAHHH the memories, now in suburbia, hubby doesnt want a fire pit and daughter hates the smell. However…..I might just win this one as the fire pit you have meets my needs perfectly. Fog has rolled into our carport with rain today, snuggle weather, I’m trying the BC chicken curry for dinner. Do I cook it for three to four hours or three quarters of an hour ?? The font I printed it in came out 3/4 ???

    • sarah says:

      for 3 to 4 hours in a crockpot or slowly on the stove top… you can do it in about an hour if you are pushed for time but the longer you leave it the better (leftovers are great!)

      on the firepit I don’t think you can go wrong b/c you can use it and put it away and it won’t effect anyone else x

      • Neen says:

        Thankyou for curry timing follow-up, might try in oven for 3 to 4 hours, can’t wait. Leftovers are a staple in this little cottage !!!! Gotcha with the packing away idea for fire pit ;)

        • sarah says:

          my pleasure…it will be lovely in the oven for that amount of time x

          • Neen says:

            Lovely just doesn’t come close to describing the delicious heart warming BC chicken curry. A hit all round…..soccer boy has requested added chilli, teenage girl had seconds almost drank the curry ‘soup’ left in bowl. Me…..what can I say……… SO EASY PEASY, sooooo yummy, chicken was absolutely tender, taste was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. YAY !!!!!Thankyou Sarah it went straight into the recipe book. YUM YUM !!

          • sarah says:

            oh I am so pleased you all liked it!

            yep it is a keeper and a hit around here too….something so lovely about an easy dish that is a hit! xxx

            have you tried my chorizo stew? that rocks :-))) x

  8. Alice says:

    I wanted to get one so badly but we missed out opportunity for the perfect one… We will have to wait ’till next year… Plus with little ones I worry though my eldest (4) has toasted marshmellows on a camp fire and was fine (I was still pretty tense)my youngest would want to touch (though he is good with the oven)…Knowing my dog she will get her nose into the flames (she is such a nosy dog! – lol I know bad… very lame but I can’t seem to help myself…)

    • sarah says:

      I wouldn’t be letting littlies too near to one Alice…the whole point is about being relaxed and I was nervous with Barley to start with though it seems he totally gets that it’s hot which surprised me…

      how about getting the cheaper one and just using it occasionally when the kids are in bed, tucked up safely? x

  9. jan says:

    oh boy you hit the spot..have been toying with this idea for a few weeks now and so nearly grabbed one from the big B yesterday as I dragged out a couple more citrus trees….but i would love to use it on my deck..dont guess it would be a good idea! so glad you confirmed my choice though..just like the look, size, function and price of that one..good choice.enjoy enjoy..

    • sarah says:

      you won’t look back, we LOVE ours, it’s been such a good choice for the family
      I didn’t know Big Dubs was doing citrus trees, thanks for the headsup, I am planting more…x

  10. Heather says:

    We just bought something similar (at Wal-Mart here in the U.S.) but haven’t “broken it in” yet – hope to this weekend when friends visit!

  11. Deanne says:

    I have been thinking that we need to have some outside winter meals- will have to organise one for the weekend!

  12. So you know Aug. 10th is National Smores day, right? It’s a good excuse to invite your friends over and have a good party. ❈ The fun is to have everyone bring non-traditional smores combos to share. Some great ones are roasted banana with a bit of white chocolate on a vanilla wafer or roasted cherry with dark chocolate and graham cracker. We’ve even done roasted mozzarella with tomato on baguette. Anything goes! ❈

  13. Mummaducka says:

    Hahaha, we have a slow combustion fire inside, high maintenance filthy dirty thing it is too, I start it up for the weekend and we love it, I just bought a nobo for during the week, on a timer and only for the hours we are at home.

    Outside, this is funny, we have a 44 gallon drum that we burn all the burnable rubbish in. We dont have rubbish service, just a big blue skip and i take the recyclables in to the town depot. Often we can all be found standing around the big drum, with axe cuts around the bottom for airflow, in winter just watching the rubbish burn and warming ourselves. I have been toying with the idea of cutting the legs off the weber kettle barbecue and using it as a more refined fire pit closer to the house.

    Any outside parties in this neighborhood require old 44 gallons, maybe cut in half with raging fires in them, cos usually it’s a tree trunk of some description used as firewood. And we don’t worry about the neighbours! They are too far away! And have fires as well.

  14. alison says:

    This post reminded me why I love camping so much, cooking over an open fire-potatoes in foil, jaffles in a camping jaffle maker, damper cooked in foil in the coals, damper cooked on sticks then remove the stick and fill it with honey or golden syrup. It’s a great experience for kids as they are growing up.


  15. Selby says:

    Must have been the night for it- we had ours on last night too! It was the first night this year and gosh I loved it:)

  16. Sarah-Jane says:

    Hi Sarah
    Lovely blog and gorgeous photos…..I was just wondering what camera you use or would recommend? I am currently researching digital cameras and am completely over-whelmed! Your photos are so clear.

  17. Hannah says:

    I love fire pits. We have no backyard and therefore don;t need one but I do dream of having a pit one of these days. You will garner so many beautiful memories around it, I am sure! x

  18. Kate (Oxford UK) says:

    We bought my husband one for his birthday a few years ago and we’ve never looked back. And if it ever stops raining on this very British Jubilee Bank holiday we may get it out later – although we’ll probably struggle to compete with the Jubilee beacon that we’ll be lighting in the village later on tonight ;)

    • sarah says:

      oh dear you are making me very homesick! I have been watching the Jublilee footage and sighing…


  19. Tiff says:

    Funny that you blogged about this – I’ve had the same internal debate (built-in vs. mobile) and have decided on the mobile for the same reasons you have mentioned. Thank you for reinforcing my decision!
    Here’s to many more toasted marshmallows in our futures ;)

    • sarah says:

      oh you won’t look back!

      I must say this is one of the best things we have bought – cheap and cheerful and great for family life for us… xoox

  20. Rukmini Roy says:

    So cute and cool… We can see rumbling clouds here in India and methinks in another couple of days we will be entering the great Indian monsoon. One of these would be lovely on our terrace!!!

    • sarah says:

      I would love to come sit on an Indian terrace & experience the monsoon! x

      • Rukmini Roy says:

        Come on over and we’ll bring out the tandoor and drink Gin and Tonic. I’d be ecstatic to have you here.
        Desperately waiting for the monsoons to start. Your fire pit instantly filled me with pictures of a rainy day, our terrace, terracotta planters and good times.

  21. Aisling says:

    I loved this post, I had to stop myself running out to bunninga and buying one straight away. Realistically I think it is already too cold here in wellington to have an open fire. We can actually get a free fire permit for the beach across the road so we should do that sometime.

    • Anonymous says:

      Fire on the beach sounds lovely Aisling, as does the fire pit Sarah. Take it easy and hope that pesky cold goes away soon.

      Hmm, I did notice that Aldi had one a few weeks ago in their specials?? – I was waiting for you to blog about it Sarah he he. I wonder if anyone could still score one: http://www.aldi.com.au/au/html/offers/2827_21816.htm

    • sarah says:

      oh I think you can still do it if it’s cold – we used to do it in England too in the Winter…it’s almost better that way! I just would rug up super snug in beannie, ski jacket etc…. love it when the air is crisp sitting around a fire…

      and wowzas to lucky you with a fire on the beach! x

  22. Kim Buca says:

    i picked one up curb side sort of just like the one you have there is a large subdivision here with huge stately homes and people throw all kinds of good things out that i cant figure why for the life of me they do? but i am glad they do!! i love mine love that it si portable and as you said easy to clean plus people here are alswys bundlind wood and theres always some to pick up for free no cost firewood! last week in that same neighborhood i got a wrought iron french bistro set with a little round table and 2 chairs i brought home painted white and voi`la there you have it!!! stay cozy!!!!

  23. mary says:

    I have one just like yours (or at least it looks like it). We really enjoy it, however, I was surprised when I aimlessly looked through the instructions that came with it before tossing them out that it states “not for cooking or heating food for consumption!” That was a little shocking – something about toxic fumes from the materials and coatings. You might want to check yours before letting the kiddos eat too many marshmallows roasted over it.

  24. Sarah says:

    Jelly!!!!! So looking forward to moving back to Australia, having a backyard, and the night skies… Enjoy you fabulously lucky lady x

  25. Just been looking at these online, and shared this post with my hubby – I think we have him convinced – thanks for your contribution!

    Here we sometimes light a small fire on the beach in the evenings (not much chance of bush fire here, but we are still VERY careful!) but want one for outside our holiday cottage for those nights we don’t want to head to the beach.