April Jeppson: It’s time to celebrate with all my favorites

Published 8:45 pm Saturday, September 25, 2021

Every Little Thing by April Jeppson

This week has been a whirlwind. I have worked long hours and gotten so much done, but if you ask me what I did, I’m not sure I even remember. There is just so much that has to get done, and I’ve been on overdrive trying to finish it all. I’m proud to say that once I hit submit on this article, it will be smooth sailing for me. I know that next week will bring it’s own unique challenges and to-do lists, but for now I’m going to enjoy myself.

April Jeppson

This weekend I’m having a party.

When my husband and I got married, we had a small ceremony. I had no interest in planning the details of our reception, so I asked my mother to spearhead it. She would ask me questions about different centerpieces or tablecloths and I’d guide her, but I honestly didn’t care one way or the other for most stuff. The only things that mattered to me were that I got to hang out with my friends, eat good food and dance.

A few years ago I started mentally planning my 40th birthday party. I wanted to do a girls trip to Mexico, Hawaii or even Vegas — fly somewhere warm and sit by the pool for a few days and relax. Last year when everything changed, I realized that I probably should change my plans as well.

A few months ago I started to really think about what I wanted. What makes April happy? Not just happy, but what brings me joy and uplifts my soul? If I was going to plan a party, I wanted it to be filled with all my favorite things.

I knew I had to have music. I just finished cultivating an epic playlist that I’ll be able to share with all my friends tomorrow. The trick with party music though, is that just because it’s a good song, doesn’t mean it’s going to create a good party vibe. I put probably way too much thought into it, but I’m OK with that. It was fun going through hundreds of songs and hand-selecting the best of the best.

After music, it was all about the food. It’s no secret that I love Peppered Cow. If you’ve never tried Dori’s burgers, you’re missing out. The quality of meat, the texture of the hamburger bun, the way it’s perfectly cooked — it’s a little piece of heaven. To have her parked in my driveway this weekend and join in on my celebration is about the coolest thing I can think of.

But you can’t just have real food, you need some fun stuff too. I discovered this really great cotton candy vendor at an event last year. Not only do you get the traditional stuff, but he has flavors like s’mores with little candy pieces mixed in. I bought 60 small bags of cotton candy to hang from my trees and give away to my friends. On top of that, I have jars filled with my favorite candy for everyone to snack on.

Life can be hard and some days are really tough. This weekend I not only wanted to throw myself an epic party, but I wanted to give my friends a few hours where they could unwind and just be in the moment. To eat delicious food, while listening to amazing music, surrounded by my friends is possibly one of the best things ever. I’m hoping that my friends and family will have a great time. More importantly though, I hope they will be able to feel how much I appreciate and love them.

Albert Lean April Jeppson is a wife, mom, coach and encourager of dreams. Her column appears every Saturday.