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Customs, Changes, Positivity, and… Weddings??

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By Dr. Michelle Jorgensen

What do you think of your new life through the COVID-19 Pandemic??

We have all had some crazy weeks lately, but this last week was especially crazy for my family! 

Let me tell you about it…

I have twin boys that are in college. They both had wonderful girlfriends, and one had proposed and was planning for a March 20th wedding. The other was close to proposing and was planning for a July wedding.

We were excited and choosing colors and flowers and ties…everything you’re supposed to do for a wedding. Then the virus started making the news, and the world started to change. 

My son that already had a wedding date had to make changes almost every day 

    • They had to uninvite people to gatherings
    • Cancel brunches and receptions 
    • Accept smaller numbers for the wedding ceremony and 
    • Worry they weren’t going to make it to the wedding day before everything closed

My other son realized he may not even have that much of a wedding if he waited until July. 

We jumped into action!

My daughter and I ran around crazily preparing flowers and balloons for a proposal, he got the ring, popped the question, and she said yes

That was Saturday! 

The wedding was scheduled for the following Tuesday! She didn’t have a wedding dress, flowers, a groom’s ring or bridesmaid dresses.

It was time to prioritize.  And the miracles started happening!

  1. One of my amazing team members found a dress the bride could borrow that fit perfectly. It was dirty from a recent wedding, so I scrubbed it late into the night in my bathtub.
  2. This same team member worked hard to make beautiful bouquets, corsages, and boutonnieres. The bride and I went to Trader Joe’s to buy the flowers – who knew they had beautiful, inexpensive flowers!?
  3. The bride and her friends had enough dresses in their closets in the right color scheme for all the bridesmaids to borrow.
  4. Amazon prime came through with matching ties and a ring for the groom.
  5. We set up a family dinner in my basement, with tables, decorations, tablecloths from my next-door neighbor, and chairs and fancy plates gathered from three other neighbors.
  6. We made the food, and other friends helped serve it while we were at the ceremony. (We made an absoultely delicious salad for the wedding, so I decided to also post the recipe to that salad here. Check it out!)
  7. A friend took pictures for free, and the day was beautifully recorded. 

It was a day of miracles, and it really made me ask a deep question…

How much of what we do is “custom”, and how much is absolutely necessary? 

The absolutely necessary part was the ceremony. It was in a temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints near our home, and it was simple, serene, and perfect. 

As we all navigate this new world we are living in, I challenge you to ask the same question.  

What is really necessary, and what is just something “you’ve always done”?  

It makes it easier when your lifestyle changes. 

Today I saw a great book I wanted to buy (that’s my one addiction), but I realized I didn’t really need it. I saved $37 plus shipping and handling and started reading a book I already have. It was actually quite freeing to know that I had power over this part of my life 

Both weddings were perfect and didn’t lose a single thing from being smaller or less planned.  In fact, we saved thousands.

Knowing what we know now, we wouldn’t have changed a thing!

Look at these changes in a positive light.

What is going great now in your changed world?  For me:

  • I’m cooking three delicious meals a day, and the kids are helping
  • We are spending nights playing games and catching up on American Idol instead of working late into the night
  • I am heavily involved with my kids’ school and am learning what they are learning
  • I have time for walks with my husband and dog
  • I am catching up on things like posting to Living Well with Dr. Michelle!


My challenge for you is this:

  1. Look for the silver lining in these changes!
  2. Realize that many parts of our former lives were based customs. Choosing another way can be freeing and save a ton of money!

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Go check out my newest recipe for the “Can’t Get Enough Fruit and Nut Salad” that we ate at the wedding!

Please share some ideas for how you are finding the silver lining in this current world condition. 

And stay safe and healthy!


Dr. Michelle Jorgensen

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