When all else fails, creativity, resourcefulness, and a lot of prayer can turn a very challenging situation into an unexpected blessing. Such was the case for Julianne Sojourner. Julianne was a part of the original wedding team for Madelon Kneece and Gilly Dotterer’s April wedding. She had developed a beautiful, elaborate flower plan, and while all were disappointed that those plans would have to be modified because of COVID-19, Julianne was thrilled when the family decided to move the wedding to the lake.
However, as with many businesses during the onset of the pandemic, no flower trucks were running and all florists were closed. No fresh inventory was to be found. Julianne decided to call on her friend who works at Branham’s Florist Supply, where she purchases many of her wholesale flowers. The friend agreed to let her come look in the coolers for any remaining flowers when she went to the office to feed the koi fish.
“The flowers in the cooler were already two weeks old. They should not have been alive at that point,” says Julianne with a laugh. “Thankfully, some still looked quite beautiful.” She gathered what she could and complemented the selection with fresh flowers and greenery from her own garden.
From her selections, Julianne created the bridal bouquet, boutonnieres for the groom and father, two arrangements, and the dog’s collar. The roses, larkspur, variegated pittosporum, and other cuttings combined to create lovely arrangements perfect for the lake setting. Julianne used Crowning Glory, a spray-on product that helps flowers stay hydrated. “I sprayed the heck out of those flowers!” she says. She then did what many have begun offering during the pandemic and provided curbside pickup, allowing the bride’s aunt to safely pick up the arrangements and take them to the wedding.
After that, she waited breathlessly, hoping the flowers would survive the special day. Julianne was unable to watch the Facebook Live wedding event so she feverishly texted a friend to ensure the bouquet made it through the wedding. It did, as did the rest of the flowers, thus proving that ingenuity and a few extra prayers can make all of the difference in the midst of a pandemic.