When I was little, Eid used to be a day where receiving money, eating more candy than ever and aunts pinching my cheeks were the main activities. Even though I enjoyed Eid I often asked my mother: ‘Mum, why do we never celebrate Christmas, Easter or birthdays?’ as those celebrations were more fun in the eyes of a child raised in a Western country. Which is a shame, because Eid is a beautiful celebration which brings happiness to all Muslims. Once I became older, I realised Eid should be celebrated as the beautiful day it is. Each year I am determined to make Eid more fun and special at home, especially for my siblings. Besides putting on new clothes and perfume there are many more ways to get ready for Eid, so here are 6 ways to make Eid more fun!
1. Make your home Eid-proof with decorations.
How can your family notice it is a special day? Through bright and colourful decorations in the house. Nowadays Eid themed decorations are available everywhere, however if you do not want to spend money you can be creative instead. Make banners and flags yourself by cutting colourful paper in the form you want and draw ‘Happy Eid!’ or ‘Eid Mubarak’ on it.
When you do not have enough time, you could also download many Eid printables from the internet for free! Ready to print, so you have your Eid treat bags, dessert flags and banners in a few minutes.
Let your family help you with decorating and make it a fun activity. Or keep it a secret for your family and decorate the whole house by yourself at night. Surprised faces guaranteed in the morning!
2. Secret Eidia
Others have Secret Santa, we have Secret Eidia. As Eid approaches it is time to buy each other gifts. All names of the participants are placed in a box and every participant draws a person’s name out of the box. Afterwards you buy a gift for that person. On Eid each participant places the present on the table. The gifts are marked with the name of the receiver only, and not the giver. So the receiver has to guess who the giver is. Whether you have a small or big family, this is a fun way to give each other gifts.
3. Get the kids involved!
What did you love to do when you were a child? Play games right? Put away the phones and iPads, turn off the television and grab those board games covered with dust. Play monopoly or twister with your younger siblings or cousins, or make an Islam quiz with fun prizes to win. Have fun like old times and get to know each other better.
Another option is to bake cupcakes and cookies during Eid. Get the children involved and make them sit at the table with all kinds of cupcake decorations. Give an empty cupcake so they can start decorating. Unleash the creativity, kids!
4. Candy buffet
Transform a table into candy table. Place a nice tablecloth and fill glass jars and plates with an assortment of brightly coloured candy and sweets. Buy treat bags from the shop and let everyone fill their bag with the candy they like. This one is not just for the kids, the whole family can enjoy. There is no limit to eating candy on Eid ;). A candy buffet brightens the room and makes eating candy more special. A great alternative is a fruit buffet, dessert buffet, cookie buffet or a mix of all.
5. Day out
Instead of having the whole family coming over to come eat, eat and eat after Eid prayers, you could also choose to have a day out. In this way, all family members can enjoy Eid equally so no one has to stand in the kitchen all day. Going to the zoo or an amusement park and afterwards to a restaurant is a great way to spend your Eid in a relaxed way.
6. Food + fun = picnic!
We cannot deny: Eid is all about the food. If you’d rather stay close to home, there are still ways to make it more special. After Eid prayers you could invite your family over to a park for a big picnic. Plan in advance who brings what food. Bring a Frisbee, tennis racket and a ball and play with your parents, uncles, aunts and siblings. You could also do this in the garden if you have one. On a rainy day you could stay at home and invite everyone over, there is nothing wrong with the traditional way. In the end, Eid is about gathering with your family: be extra kind, think of the poor and spread the love!
This article is written by Fatima Benhaddou