Ramadan Garments

Many of us are familiar with the verse in the Qur’an that is translated as, “It has been made permissible for you the night preceding fasting to go to your wives. They are clothing for you and you are clothing for them...” (Surat al Baqara, aya 187). There are workshops across the country dedicated to introducing, reviving, and strengthening the Islamic principles of marriage using the building block, “Hunna libaasun lakum wa antum libaasun lahunna.”  What does it mean for my husband to be my gar … [Read more...]

Ramadan Blues

The demanding aspects of our full time job as mothers can have a debilitating affect on our spirituality, especially if we have young children who need constant attention and nurturing. We are caught up in the wheel of chores and routines where we seldom find time for ourselves.Ramadan is when we feel it most. We reminiscence of the days when we had the freedom to worship as we please without being tied down to responsibilities. We develop a sense of regret and remorse and wish we did that … [Read more...]

A Mother’s Guilt

Every night around 11PM, as soon as my 1-year old son begins calling for me with his unique cry, I feel like a failure; a “mommy-fail,” if you will. He’s a happy, energetic, social and curious toddler by day, and a semi-monster by night. He goes down in his crib most nights without a struggle, but 3-4 hours later, he wants nothing to do with his crib and wants nobody but me. I have tried many a sleep training methods, read several sleep training books, consulted countless mothers, but to no avail … [Read more...]

Growmama Roundup: How To Train Children To Fast

We asked two of our Growmama writers to share with us how they train their children to fast. Here are their replies:S writes:When the kids were preschoolers I would let them stay up for iftaar and make a yummy spread so that they understood that Ramadan and fasting was very special. Now that they are almost 6 and 8 years old they need more training. It's hard because many of us have conditioned our kids to eat. Phrases like "Finish your plate, drink more water, eat your veggies" don't s … [Read more...]

10 Ways to Green Your Ramadan

A Green Ramadan is an opportunity to remember and respect our planet which, through the grace of Allah, provides us with the sustenance with which we nourish our bodies and community spirit during a month of fasting. Interacting mindfully with our environment is simply a manifestation of faith. As we refrain from food and drink this blessed Ramadan, let us reaffirm our sense of self-restraint and accountability to the Creator, the Provider of Sustenance.Eat Local & Organic. How much … [Read more...]

Tips for a Healthy and Nutritious Ramadan

Muslims in Dietetics and Nutrition (MIDAN)’s:Top 10 Tips for Enjoying a Healthy and Nutritious Ramadan1. Focus on healthy foods that keep you fuller longer during suhoor (pre-fast) and iftar (break-fast) meals:• Fiber:  whole wheat grains, breads, cereals, and pastas; brown rice vegetables and fruits, beans, nuts* and seeds*,Protein: lean animal meat; fish/seafood, low-fat or nonfat dairy (milk, yogurt, cheese) beans, nuts*, and seeds*Healthy Fats: olives and olive oil, canola oil … [Read more...]

Ramadan: A Month of Reflection and Renewal for the Soul

A month of fasting from all food and drink from sunrise to sunset may not sound like anything to look forward to but Ramadan is the most beautiful and most anticipated month of the year for many Muslims, myself included.  It is the month in the Islamic year that unites all Muslims from all ethnicities and social classes, a month that reminds us all that the only thing that makes one person better than another is their piety, not their wealth or status.  It is the month in which we humble o … [Read more...]

Children of Heaven: A Movie Review

When my husband travels, my children and I have an evening ritual called “cozy nights.” We cheerfully tidy up the whole house, eat a half-hearted dinner like cheese and crackers, then settle down with blankets on the couch with hot chocolate or watermelon for a movie.  It makes the day shorter for me and gives us all something to look forward to.Recently, we watched Children Of Heaven, which I strongly recommend for families with young children to watch. It was profoundly beautiful, rich with … [Read more...]

Dandelion Parenting

Many years ago when I was in college,  I was pregnant.  It was in a child psychology class that I came to the realization of how big the task ahead of me really was.  I was having a baby... A BABY!  Was I really ready?  As if reading my mind my professor asked us, "Why do we have children?"  The question caught me off guard.  He went on, "Why do we, as humans, have babies?"  No one could say anything at first.  Someone responded, "to reproduce, out of instinct," another said "to have a family."  … [Read more...]

Al-Kawthar

You never know when something will strike you differently.  I know surah al-Kawthar and recite it fairly often.  As a mom with young kids running about I am often forced to resort to very short surahs in my prayers, and it doesn't get much shorter than this one:1. Verily, We have granted you (O Muhammad) Al-Kauthar (a river in Paradise)2. Therefore turn in prayer to your Lord and sacrifice.3. For he who makes you angry - he will be cut off.I recite it and go on.  But this morning, while s … [Read more...]