spark: Lori Vavak

When I think of rituals, it brings back special memories such as family camping trips, helping Grandpa make homemade ice cream for the Fourth of July celebration, sledding down the hill to our Grandma and Grandpa’s house on snow days and so many more. One ritual that started from the day I was born was going to church with my family every week. As I got older, I experienced attending a different church for a few years. I always felt very welcome, but it just never felt quite like home. Thanks to the encouragement from my sister and brother-in-law, I came back to my home church a couple of years ago, and it just feels right. It has become a ritual to meet my mom at church every Sunday, and sometimes, we enjoy breakfast afterwards. This time means a lot to me because I know that even on the busiest of weeks, I will have this time with my very special momma.

Rituals are such an important part of our lives because this is where so many great memories are made and are a big part of who we become. I hope our children and grandchildren have plenty of special traditions they will cherish and carry on throughout the years.

Photo by Aaron Eisenhauer
Photo by Aaron Eisenhauer

Things that matter:

The song “Lean on Me,” by Bill Withers

The book “What a Wonderful World,” based on the song by Bob Thiele and George David Weiss, as sung by Louis Armstrong

My mom’s dressing — I have three sisters, and we have all attempted to make it, but it just isn’t as good as hers.


Whatever artwork my 3-year-old granddaughter makes for me.

Other than my wedding dress, the item of clothing I remember the most is my bell-bottom jeans with flowers embroidered on them from the ‘70s.

Glacier National Park

Photo by Aaron Eisenhauer