Having recently come back from doing the walk, I thought it might be useful to share some resources and practical tips that will Inshallah help the trip go smooth and also have the kids benefit as much as possible!
After having recently come back from the Arbaeen walk/Ziyarat, I thought it might be helpful to put a few handy hints together for those who go in the future – both with and without kids!
Things to pack for the walk:
The bare minimum is always advised! Snacks are abound, but here are some things that came in handy:
- Tissues/Wipes – a travel pack
- A small anti bac, cream, essential meds
- V light bathroom slippers – sounds odd, but this saves a lot of hassle and dirt as you have to wear your shoes to the bathrooms at the mawkibs
- Face cloth – will come in handy if you need to have a quick shower at the mawkib
- Your own mohr/turbah – again, saves time and energy looking for some
- Hat/Sunglasses/small suncream – for women visors are great. They do sell them there but it’s probably easier to take one with you rather than spend time looking there.
- Disposable poncho for unexpected showers are handy
- Ipod/phone with downloaded lectures/Quran/Nauhas with earphones to listen to on the walk
- Tasbih counter – to do dhikr
- If you have kids who will not be able to use the Easter toilets, then disposable seat covers might be a good buy. Just pls don’t thrown them down the toilet as the flush systems are not very good and will get clogged up.
- For kids suffering from allergies/asthma, a mask is a good idea.
- High vis jackets for them to wear, or even to pin on the back of their bagpacks is a good way to keep them visible. Alternatively make them wear a bright top. Always have a pre-agreed mawkib for where you will meet in case you get separated if you have older kids.
- For older kids who might want to go ahead on their own, one family brought a walkie talkie set which was ingenious and allowed the parents not to worry too much if they were not in sight!
- A wrist link might be a good idea for younger kids.
- The group you are going with will usually give out lanyards or cards with hotel and contact no details, but it’s also a good idea to make sure they have full ID attached to them also.
- If you like tea, please do take a very light reusable cup! There is a lot of wastage of disposables and you can make a difference by filling your own cup at the mawkibs or during the walk. They will also come in VERY handy at the hotels!
- For fussy eaters, small milk carton and cereal boxes are handy for breakfast.
Things for the haram:
The best investment we made was foldable thin shoes which came in a small bag that you could store away in your purse when entering the haram, rather than having to go put your shoes in the storage.
- For women, these Roll Up Fold Pumps is a suggested buy: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/GYMNASTIC-SHOES-LEATHER-TRAMPOLINE-TRAINING-DANCING-CUSHIONED-PUMPS-IN-3-COLOURS/152503162969?hash=item2381e59859:m:mHbYLBjwMV9_ofA5wzt8JoA
- For men, similar shoes: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/GYMNASTIC-SHOES-LEATHER-TRAMPOLINE-TRAINING-DANCING-CUSHIONED-PUMPS-IN-3-COLOURS/152503162969?hash=item2381e59859:m:mHbYLBjwMV9_ofA5wzt8JoA
- For kids, this is a suggested buy:
For kids, workbooks and journals are great to keep them occupied. You might not have the time to sit and work too much at the haram, but they also come in handy for the hotel for when it’s too busy to go out. Also, if going to the haram, trying going to the higher levels which are big halls and usually have much more space than near the zarih area.
(recommended for 13 and over)
(recommended for 7 to 13)
Video resources to watch before you go:
This movie gives a glimpse into the journey that Bibi Zainab, the 4th Imam and others faced in the aftermath of Kerbala: https://www.shiatv.net/video/d968459b6342c01498b8
“So, while I find myself feeling overwhelmed and disconnected during the majalis, I have found the solution to all those issues through the acts of Imam al-Husayn (as). Mothers must, whether at a very minute or grandiose level, sacrifice like our Imam did. Sacrificing our peace of mind, our physical energy, and at times, even sleep for the child’s benefit. While this sacrifice is not limited to any month or day of the year, it is felt especially strong and perhaps, even burdensome, in Muharram. Our sacrifices are not for vain, it is for our young seedlings to take root and grow. With time’s allowance, their souls will bear the fruits of our hard work. The difference is that despite us not being in the time of Karbala, we are in a time even more necessary for sacrifice: the occultation of Imam Mahdi (aj), the Husayn of our time.”
Read the full article here.
Every Muharram we take the opportunity to give ourselves resolutions for the year ahead. This year in the girls’ classes we asked them to pick 3 small things that they knew was good to do, and encouraged them to try and make it a habit by doing it over the next 40 days – from Ashura to Arbaeen.
May Allah accept our mourning for Aba Abdillah, and help us transform it into true knowledge and bettering ourselves, Inshallah.
I loved these ideas on how to continue the learning achieved in the majlis! These books were given out at the end of two majalis – can you guess what the topics were?
That’s right – Keeping Promises and Good Intentions 😉
A little something to help children retain what they have learnt and more importantly, act on it!
Alams have featured a lot these last few months in different majalises, workshops and classes!
Some were done in the classes as an art and craft project, others were made at home as giveaways for those who attended the majlis, for the children to keep at home in their room as a reminder of the noble personality that we commemorate.
Thanks to those that sent in these pics!
Another beautiful idea of something to give our children to help them remember Imam Husayn (as)…
This handkerchief was given out in a children’s majlis.
One thing parents may face is the question of how to mark their children’s birthdays during these two months of Muharram and Safar. This was the first year we have had to deal with this and while we celebrated before Muharram started, my daughter wanted to take in sweets on the day to school, as is the norm.
So with the kind help of the creator of the Random Acts of Kindness cards that i shared a few days ago, we decided to do this! We waited until the 10 days were over and then gave out a little chocolate as well as the cards, with a little message on top about the commemoration of Ashura, in order to raise awareness about Imam Hussain (as).
Inshallah may it lead to lots of acts of kindness in the name of Imam Hussain!