We had the good fortune of connecting with Kim Stephens and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kim, putting aside the decision to work for yourself, what other decisions were critical to your success?
A very important step I made sure to take was doing my research on the legalities of running a Texas Cottage Food Business. There is a lot to keep up with to do it properly. Also, deciding that I would try to put as much effort into “the look” of my booth and labeling as I did the content of the jars. I take great pride in being the jam maker that tries new things and then makes sure that the packing matches that product.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I consider The Peace Love & Jam Society my “retirement” business. Prior to that I was a Telecom Project Manager. Before that I worked at a Law Firm. In other words this is my FUN time! Customers can know that lots of time, consideration, top notch ingredients and love go into everything I make. Being able to add to the joy in peoples life through food products gives me a great sense of accomplishment.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Farmers Markets! I enjoy participating in and yes visiting local Farmers Markets! Small business means a lot to me, and I have found them to be some of the hardest working people on the planet! The creativity is off the charts as well. I enjoy Old Town Spring and Tomball as well for the shops, eateries etc. The Whistle Stop café in Tomball is one of my very favorite places to be, yes for the food but also for the warmth of the owner and staff. I love The Woodlands as well!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My husband David and my Son Keith are my biggest cheerleaders. ” It is my thing” as David says, but the truth is that I could not do it without him. Originally this all started with my having too many lemons on my trees, and not wanting to waste them! Mary my niece starting making jams with me 5 years ago, then Stephanie joined us later. It was a great excuse to get together and celebrate each other and life in general. I decided to turn it into a business a few months before the pandemic started, which delayed the start of my debut at the local Farmer’s Markets. Eventually I finally got out there, and turned a profit in the first year.