Day in the Life of a Metro Detroit Muslim Family During Ramadan

It’s officially Ramadan 2024. There are a few fundamental Ramadan facts that continuously hold true year after year:

  1. Ramadan is about a month long. This year it starts on March 11th and ends around April 10th, 2024. 
  2. Muslims fast during the month of Ramadan from sunrise to sunset. Read my post “How My Family is Celebrating Ramadan” to learn more about Ramadan itself. 
  3. Many Muslims find their days and routines flip-flop during the month of Ramadan. This is due to the demands and daily changes fasting can incur.

I’ve spent the last few weeks preparing my home, family, and even our lifestyle for a successful Ramadan. This is because our day starts early before the sun even rises, and ends way past sunset. 

Are you wondering how Muslims spend their time during this month and what makes it so special? Curious what a typical Detroit-based Muslim family’s daily routine might be during Ramadan? Keep reading to see what our typical daily life is like during this beautiful and holy month!  

5:30 a.m. 

We’re starting off the month with a 5:30 a.m. wake up. This gets earlier as the month progresses, so by the end we’ll be waking up earlier–at around 4:45 a.m. We’re awake this early to get in a super early breakfast during a meal called Suhoor, which must be complete before sunrise. 

My favorite thing to have this early—a hot cup of coffee. (And very much needed, I might add.) While many Muslims might choose to forego their morning cup of coffee at Suhoor—along with a caffeine withdrawal the week before Ramdan—I’ve found that I do better with it, so now I drink mine at Suhoor.  

Suhoor meals are protein-packed foods to keep us full during the day. Some of my family’s personal favorites for this early meal include egg omelets (my girls love them with cheddar cheese), overnight oats, protein waffles and pancakes, bagels and cream cheese, etc. As a special Suhoor treat I also buy my girls their favorite sugary cereals that aren’t allowed through my front door during the rest of the year. 

After finishing our early breakfast and guzzling down what seems like a gallon of water, we have a few more minutes before morning prayer. Muslims complete five prayers during the day—the first happening before sunrise. Frequent prayer helps us constantly be reminded of God’s blessings and remain steadfast in our faith. 

We’ll read from our Quran books, and about 15 minutes later it’s time to pray. If it’s a weekend and my kids don’t have school we’ll do a family prayer together. But since today is a weekday, they’re going to pray alone and then head back to bed for a few more hours before school.   

6:00 a.m. 

This is one of my favorite times of the day in general for me—and especially during Ramadan. I’m sure every mom—whether Muslim or not—can relate. Since the rest of my family is asleep, I blissfully get the quiet house to myself. 

Fueled on that suhoor cup of coffee, I’ll sit to peacefully get some work done for the next couple hours. As a stay-at-home mom and writer, these moments of quiet are indispensable to me. I’ll break these two hours up into work time, and Quran reading time. 

During Ramadan, Quran recitation is at the forefront of Muslims’ religious actions. This is because we believe the Quran was completed during this month. So I like to get cozy with a blanket on my empty living room couch, and read my Quran peacefully, as I’m better able to focus on it during this time.

After that I might pull out my laptop and catch up on some work before I see the sun coming up and it’s time to get my kiddos ready for school. 

9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. 

My kids are in school, so I try to get as much done as I can with them out of the house. Yet another aspect many of you moms can relate to as well! I try to finish any time-consuming work early in Ramadan. (Thank goodness for that Suhoor cup of coffee again!) This means grocery shopping; washing, chopping, and preparing all the produce and whatever prep I can get out of the way for dinner. I find this cuts down significantly on time during that Iftar dinner rush. Iftar is the meal we break our fast with at sunset—usually dinner. 

After dinner is prepped, I’ll move on to general house stuff such as cleaning, organizing, laundry, etc. Again, the game plan here is get it all done while that jolt of caffeine is still in my veins! 

1:00-3:00 p.m.

Once I’m done with all my household chores and dinner is prepped and ready in the fridge, around this time is where I’ll pray my afternoon prayers. Then comes one of my favorite parts of my day where I sit again to complete any writing and desk tasks. 

I’ll also save some time before picking up my kids to reopen my Quran and read some more of the chapter I started in the morning. Sometimes I’m able to complete it now, and sometimes I’ll have a little bit left for later. Being that Arabic is my second language, I’m a little slower at reading it. So it takes me a bit longer to finish up that Quran chapter. But the pride and accomplishment I feel afterwards is priceless, and makes the harder work so worthwhile! 

4:00-5:00 p.m. 

My kids are picked up from school. Another huge change for my family during Ramadan is that we have less extracurricular activities during this month. 

I allow us much more “free rest time” together on the weekdays during Ramadan. For us that means more television, reading, and play time. Which also makes this month more special for my kids, as they look forward to our stricter rules being bent a little while they’re fasting. 

So for this next hour we’re winding down from school and watching television together. One of our favorite shows to watch together? Full House! I got my kids into it, and now it’s become a Ramadan tradition for us to catch one episode every afternoon after school!

5:00-7:00 p.m.

Full House is over and now it’s time for homework. Since we don’t have any extracurricular activity disruptions, I can give my kids my full attention while we do this. This is another aspect of this beautiful month I look forward to: our “family time” is maximized. The “evening rush” usually disrupting our time together is much slower.

I can sit to do homework with my kids for longer. There is no worrying about rushing for karate class, or my listening to them practicing piano from the kitchen while I multitask to be done before our next activity. We’re able to take our time completing all these tasks, and possibly still have time to read a book, watch TV, and/or go for a walk together if it’s warmer. 

My kids will also get ready for bed at this time. On a normal night we’d do this pre-bedtime prep routine after dinner. But Iftar dinner is a major event of the Ramadan day. Since Iftar is close to bedtime, our focus and energy is about to shift greatly for these last few hours of the day. 

7:00-8:00 p.m. 

Here it is folks: the dinner rush to end all dinner rushes! Preparing Iftar dinner is like being on a cooking show where you’re cooking as fast as you can, racing to beat the clock—where the ideal finish line is even before the clock ends.

Because when that minute hand hits Iftar time—around 8:00 in this case–the entire household is eating at the exact same time. So dinner can’t be late even by a few minutes. This is where that dinner prep I did earlier comes in handy. Since everything is pretty much prepared it doesn’t take long to heat things up, or take out what I need from the fridge. 

On the flip side though, the entire household is eating at the exact same time. For 30 days straight. We all sit down together at the exact same time every night for 30 days. The only time of the entire year that we do. And they’re the most special meals I have the fondest memories of. 

8:00-9:00 p.m.

As far as what’s for Iftar dinner? This really depends on the day. There are some foods associated with Ramadan and Iftar, but the general rule of thumb is nourishing and hydrating foods after a long day of fasting. 

Most Iftar meals usually consist of dates which are an Islamic tradition, and both a soup and a salad because they’re nutritious and hydrating. There will also be a protein as a main course, as well as some carbohydrate-rich foods as sides. On this particular day we’re having dates, lentil soup, fattoush, spring rolls, hamburgers, and french fries.

While I know many people who will plan out their entire menus for the whole 30 days, I only plan them out weekly, depending on what we’re all craving. And if there’s one thing I love to do in Ramadan: it’s honor our delicious cravings! 

After Iftar everyone pitches in to clean up, because more hands make light work. We complete our evening prayers, and then it’s off to bed for my kiddos. 

As for my husband and I, this hour is another “time” perk Ramadan gave back to me. Since we finished dinner together, we get to relax in the evening together after dinner too. On a regular day we’d both be ending dinner at different times due to our differing work and extracurricular schedules. But in Ramadan during this hour, we get to enjoy a post-Iftar cup of coffee together as we watch a live-streamed Ramadan Islamic lecture. 

10:00-11:00 p.m. 

I’ll usually end the night with a TV show. Right now I’m currently watching This is Us. Then it’s off to bed and wake up again at 5:30 a.m. to do it all over again. 

I hope reading this “day in the life–Ramadan style” helped you see what a typical day is like for my family during Ramadan. Some aspects of the month, such as fasting, require us to maneuver our day a bit to meet its demands. But other aspects such as the time spent with family—is truly a gift given back to us in exchange. 

Lastly, to anyone also celebrating Ramadan, I bid you a beautiful Ramadan Kareem!

There are many things to learn about Ramadan. Faten is sharing a little bit about what she’s learned about sacrifice, self-discipline, and gratitude.


  1. Hey Rana I’m a friend of Rola’s and that’s an amazing schedule that you have planned but I’m a Catholic which me and my family does lent every year and it’s a blessing that lent and Ramadan is very close to each other this year but have a blessed one

    • Hi Heather! Thank you so much for your kind words and well wishes. I hope you have a very beautiful and blessed Lent as well! I also noticed that Lent and Ramadan coincided this year, and thought it was so beautiful too!


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