Sharing the love with gift exchange and a feast
After a month of Ramadan and with the sighting of the crescent moon among the stars, came the celebration of Eid! I wanted to share a glimpse of what my family, along with my extended families, on this day. Ramadan, in a nutshell, involves lots of prayers, doing good, and giving to charity. I hope you've had the chance to check out the previous post where I shared a little more and a red, white, and blue table setting inspiration for when Memorial Day met Ramadan. While growing up, the highlight of this month for me was sharing Iftar meals every evening, after sunset, with families and with the less fortunate. The month ended with Eid Prayer, feasting, celebrations, donations, and/or lots of gift giving for families, neighbors, co-workers, maids, caretakers, and even strangers.
The joy, as well as the pressure, was in the endless visit to the malls and shops to gather gifts for families and friends. Imagine the mall experience and the shopping spree during the end of year holidays. That's pretty much what happened in Ramadan leading up to Eid (Of course, there's also the true essence of Ramadan practices that take place during this month). My dad, Abbu, used to buy gifts for all his in-laws and would get new clothes for me and even my cousin-sisters. On the day of Eid, dressed in our new clothes from family, my dad used to take us to visit as many relatives as we possibly could. It's definitely a fond memory.
For the last many years, I've been planning and organizing an annual gift giving celebration to not only share love, laughter, and memories with the future generation, but to also pay tribute to my parents traditions as I have experienced it as a child. Where giving ten to fifteen gifts at a time to extended families is not always feasible, an exchange of gifts to share is the perfect way to uphold the tradition of giving on Eid.
We always host a potluck party, where each family bring in a dish and a gift to share with the immediate and extended families. With a raffle draw, a few weeks prior, each person gets the name of the gift-receiver. Almost a hundred people attended the party and nearly sixty people participated in the gift exchange. It was an absolute blast.
Do you or your family celebrate Eid? If you do, happy Eid - Eid Mubarak! If you don't, thank you so much for reading, and I hope you enjoyed learning a little about the celebrations of Eid.
Speaking of celebrations, fourth of July is right around the corner! What do you have planned? We usually throw a BBQ party, and sometimes, go out to see the fireworks afterwards. My husband is a huge fan of the fireworks. I, on the other hand, dread standing in the long line of cars, trying to get out of the parking lot after the show. With a wedding weekend ahead of us this week and in mid July through August, we have to take it easy this year. I would love to hear about you! Simply leave me a comment or send me a message. Let's get social!
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