Ramadan is here, alhamdulilah! Are you ready? Do you have a Ramadan routine yet? If not, it’s not too late!
It’s taken me quite a few years to learn what I want to complete before Ramadan starts, and with a growing family, advanced planning makes or breaks my Ramadan, especially how much barakah I get out of it. But for those of you who haven’t prepared before Ramadan, you can still apply these tips in the first days of Ramadan, so you can make the rest of your Ramadan easier inshAllah. Here are 5 ways that help me to prepare for Ramadan.
1. Clean the house
Especially now, that we are in the longest days of the year, I just don’t have the energy to keep on top of the dusting and vacuuming like I want. At least if I start Ramadan with a clean and organized house, I can keep the mess at bay and spot clean, and it won’t be in terrible shape by the time Eid comes.
Within a week of Ramadan I try to make sure I do a deep clean of the house, but if you didn’t get to it, you can still do this at the beginning of Ramadan. This year I’m using our Easy Peasy Chore system to keep tabs on what I need to do.
2. Meal Plan and Freezer Meals
Usually I make meal plans for two weeks at a time, following my husband’s pay schedule. For Ramadan, I want the entire month planned. If I’m really on top of it, I’ll have two shopping lists: one for the beginning of the month and one for the end, so I can have fresh produce throughout the month, plus it disperses the grocery bill throughout the month as well.
The last couple years I’ve also prepared meals in advance and kept them in the freezer, so I don’ t have to cook at all some days. I find it’s too easy to get sucked into the trend of focusing on what you’re making for iftar, rather than focusing on your worship and learning, so I love to have my meals done before Ramadan even starts.
Instead of setting aside an entire day to prepare freezer meals, like you’ll find suggested in many freezer meal posts online, I do a mix of doubling up recipes I’m already making, freezing the second portion, and preparing a separate meal just for the freezer. Once again, you can do this at the start of Ramadan, to enjoy the remaining weeks, especially the last ten days!
Part of helping my kids build excitement for Ramadan is letting them help me decorate! Personally, I’ve found if I don’t get to decorating before Ramadan officially starts, I don’t get all my decorations out. I make a day of it, and get the entire house decorated within a couple of nights of Ramadan starting. Need decoration ideas? I’ve put together some of my favorite Ramadan decorations for you to browse through. Alternatively, you can use the first day or two of Ramadan, as a special time to decorate the house and welcome the new month with festivity.
4. Eid gifts
I spend a lot of time online searching for Eid gifts. I don’t want to squander my time during Ramadan with shopping! I won’t always find everything for Eid before Ramadan starts, but I at least want a good list of what to get my family before the month starts so I can focus on the real meaning of Ramadan and Eid, in sha Allah. Sometimes this is not always possible, so try to use the first week of Ramadan to get this done if you must, and leave the last weeks of Ramadan for your ibadah.
I want to start Ramadan off strong, and like most people, I love checklists! Since I have three young kids, and a teenager (so my mothering hours are long some days), I keep my Ramadan goal list pretty simple. I found this one for this year that I like. I’m sure you can find many others if it doesn’t suit you.
Have some more ideas? Share what you do to prepare for Ramadan with us!