Today we’d like to introduce you to Stephanie Smith.
Hi Stephanie, thanks for joining us today. We’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
I have always been a baker. My grandmother taught me how to bake when I was a small child, and I fell in love with it. I was always the official family baker in our house. My dad would request brownies, or a cake, or cookies, and I would get to work.
My main job is mom. I love it. There is nothing I would rather be. Jam Cottage allows me to be a stay-at-home mom and homeschool my sweet 10-year-old daughter, while still having a fulfilling career. It’s been a dream.
I love the look on my customers’ faces when they take that first bite of one of my cookies, or sample one of my jams. It makes my whole day when I see that smile.
Delicious food is my love language. I love to feed people. I am very lucky to be able to do what I love every day.
Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not, what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
I have built my business from scratch while trying to remain debt-free. I started out with just what I had in my kitchen – a few cookie sheets, a basic oven, some ingredients from my pantry. I have added equipment and supplies with the money I make at my various markets.
Since Jam Cottage is a one-woman show, I do everything from baking to packaging to marketing. It’s been quite a learning curve, but I love challenges! I encourage anyone who has a dream to start where you are. Just do one little thing. Read that business book. Sign up for that class. Talk to people who are doing what you want to do and make connections. Each little step builds on the last.
Work/life balance is also a challenge for me. My daughter’s schooling comes first, of course, so I have to keep that in mind when deciding on how many orders and markets to take on for the week. I have had to learn how to kindly say no to people and not feel bad about it.
As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
I am a cottage baker who specializes in gourmet cookies. Some of my customer favorites at the Independence Uptown Farmers Market are my Chocolate Chunk, made with big chunks of Belgian chocolate, and my Cookie Monster cookie, made with tiny little Oreos and chocolate chip cookies, and of course, it’s blue.
Not to brag, but one of my favorite farmer’s market vendors says my peanut butter cookies are the best he’s ever had!
I also make a pretty special oatmeal raisin cookie using 5 different kinds of raisins.
I am also known for my jams with unique flavor combinations, like my White Sangria Jam. It’s a combination of peaches, strawberries, pineapple, and white wine. The wine cooks out during the jam-making process, but you still get that delicious sangria flavor. It’s great for ladies night snacks or cheese boards.
We’d be interested to hear your thoughts on luck and what role, if any, you feel it’s played for you?
I think you make your own luck with hard work and kindness. I am always on the lookout for opportunities to connect with people who can help me in my business or people who I can help. I think if you keep showing up and make yourself available then luck will find you.
- Cookies are $2 each
- Jams are $6 each
- you can also create your own mix and match cookie packs
- 6 cookies for $11
- 12 cookies for $20
- Email: orders@JamCottage.com
- Website: www.JamCottage.com
- Instagram: JamCottageAtTheSmithHouse
- Facebook: facebook.com/JamCottage