There are signature moments we parents want to share with our kids. We want to create memories that last a lifetime and can inspire the next generation.
My husband and I grew up in the prairies of Canada. For me, having immigrated to Canada at age 11 from Trinidad, there were iconic experiences about living in the prairies of Canada that made up for the fact that my family no longer lived on a tropical island near the beach.
One of these were camp fires and bonfires. We didn’t go camping in Trinidad. It’s just not something we did. We saw it on North American TV a lot though and I was always curious about things like s’mores and the smell of burning wood that they claimed would attach itself to your clothes for days.
Living in the prairies, it was cold most of the year. So gathering around a bonfire for warmth with friends was simply the thing to do. In the summer we had bonfires while camping. For dinners we made hot dogs by roasting them over a bonfire, followed by desert of marshmallows roasted over a bonfire. There’s nothing tastier than char on a hot dog or marshmallow. In the winter we would spend the day playing in the snow and then hang out by a bonfire with a cup of hot chocolate.
My husband and I now live in Vancouver, a busy city. Back in the prairies we would have bonfires in our backyards or alleyways- it was easy to do. Here, there are no bonfires. There are electric fire places in almost every home. So the desire is definitely there for Vancouver locals to have that bonfire experience.
I’m not going to lie, electric fireplaces are a cool feature to have in our home. It gives off a nice ambience. But what’s missing is, the sounds, smells and activities involved in having a bonfire or a real fireplace. It’s not just about having a fire to look at like the fireplace channel (anybody else watch that at Christmas?).
Especially with wild fires happening everywhere and ongoing heat waves, bonfires are not something that’s safe to do. The risk is simply too high. But have you heard of City Bonfires? This is a company that’s created a bonfire that can fit in the palm of your hand and can be carried along in a handbag or backpack.
My husband Jesiah and I got the City Bonfire S’mores Night Pack and shared a romantic evening on the patio with it. It was nothing like I expected!
When Jesiah first lit the small bonfire it looked like a little four wick candle for a few seconds and even smelt like a candle. Not a scented candle but just a candle. Then suddenly it turned into this actual bonfire. It had these beautiful flames and it crackled!
I have asthma, so I’m always wary of bonfire smoke blowing in my face. There was no smoke. The only time there was smoke was when we blew it out and even then there was no harsh smell. Speaking of which! This flame did not blow out by the wind and it got quite windy on our patio. The flames just danced beautifully in the gusts of wind flowing by.
Our City Bonfires S’mores Night Pack came with everything needed to make delicious s’mores. Graham crackers, marshmallows, a Hershey’s chocolate bar and these adorable little skewers. It all fit together perfectly!
But Jesiah and I both agreed our favorite part of all this was simply watching the flames of the City Bonfire dance in the wind. It was so relaxing. I forgot how much I missed seeing my husband’s face glow in the light of the flames. It’s just an all around relaxing experience sitting around this small City Bonfire. You have to experience it yourself!
For Jesiah and I, we didn’t feel comfortable having the kids involved in this particular experience with us. Simply because we were on our small balcony patio. If we were in a larger area outdoors I would feel safer to have them. Our kids are energetic and the type to dance and jump around when excited. That in a small area with flames just doesn’t seem safe for our family. But every family is different so you ought to evaluate that yourself.