She’s the queen of sweets. Since opening Cookie Fix in Homewood, Amy Jason has become a beloved fixture of downtown Homewood’s bustling shopping district. Serving up warm cookies that feature all our favorite flavors — like peanut butter salted caramel pretzel, blondies and the classic chocolate chip — Amy has a definite talent for baking some of the best cookies in Birmingham. When she’s not behind the counter, however, Amy wears a few other hats. We sat down with this dynamo to learn more about what it’s like to be a mother and a business owner, and how she juggles it all with a positive attitude and an undeniable and contagious joy. We are delighted to introduce today’s FACE of Birmingham, Amy Jason!
What’s been the most rewarding thing about opening Cookie Fix?
The customers and the stories we hear — there are just so many stories that come with ordering a dozen cookies, because most people aren’t coming in to get a dozen cookies for themselves. They’re taking those cookies somewhere and sharing them, and we get to hear those great stories of where the cookies are going. We’ve really learned that cookies are for celebration, consolation and everything in between. One girl came in recently and she was buying a dozen cookies on a Monday, and I asked her where the cookies were going, because on a Monday morning at 11 a.m., I knew this college student was doing something with them. She said, “Oh, I had my senior recital this weekend, and I had some friends help me, and I just wanted to thank them.” I told her that was so sweet and thanked her for choosing Cookie Fix. Then I said, “Oh, you’re a senior. What was your recital in?” And she said she was a voice major, so it was a voice recital. I asked her what her plans were after graduation, and she told me she was going to be a Disney princess. I have chills thinking about it!
One guy came in, and he looked wiped out. I can’t remember if he had on jeans or scrubs, but he came to the counter like he could barely make it. He ordered a dozen cookies, and I said, “So, how’s your day going?” and he said, “It’s so much better now.” He then told me it was the first day he’d been out in 28 days — was a resident at UAB and had not left the hospital for 28 days and nights straight. And Cookie Fix was his first stop.
We just hear stories like that every day.
What’s been the most challenging part?
I’m really good at juggling about three balls in the air at one time. I’m a great student because I can hyper-focus. I can really, really bear down on mundane and menial tasks that are repetitive. But this is so different from that. This is a thousand balls in the air all day, every day. So that has been challenging. This has shown me that it’s really all through the Lord. It’s not my natural talent and my natural ability. He has really surrounded me with amazing people. He has given me the endurance and the laser focus it takes. I haven’t done much else other than this for two years now. I’m having to stretch to do so many things. It’s so much more than I thought it would be. But it’s so worth it, and I would do it all again.
Describe your morning routine.
I start my day at 4:45 a.m. with a cup of coffee as I’m getting ready to go to my spin class. I have friends I have been doing spin with for 10 years. Those relationships are really important to me. It’s a breath of fresh air for me — lots of encouragement goes on. We’ve worked hard together and built strong relationships. So I start my day working out, five days a week. Sometimes less.
Then I come home. We have one child still at home, a 10th grader. It’s really important for me to spend breakfast time with him. And then when he leaves, I’ll have my quiet time and just start on my to-do list, phone calls, e-mails and really take a few hours to get that done before I go to Cookie Fix.
Then when I get there, I never know what’s going to hit me. It could be a whole lot of phone calls, a lot of customer interaction, planning for the week, looking at the menu and having a brainstorming session with the amazing ladies who work with me. We brainstorm over making an Instagram plan, our menu for the week, for the month, orders that are coming up — just any improvements that they can see, any ideas that they have to make the week go better.
As a full-time business owner and a full-time mother, how do you find peace in the everyday chaos?
It really has a lot to do with my quiet time, my spin class and sticking to my routine. It’s important that I do that, even though there are so many days and weeks when I think ‘I do not have time for that.’ It keeps me sane. I’m an endorphin junkie. My workout really fuels me and really gives me peace and slows down my fast brain. For the first 30 minutes, I’m listening to praise and worship music. It really just calms me and helps me keep things in perspective. At the end of that hour, my mood and attitude, my energy, is completely transformed. I feel like I can do life — and it won’t be as hard.
If you could only eat at one Birmingham restaurant for the rest of your life, which one would it be?
Bottega Café — I love Bottega.
Who do you admire most and why?
I’d have to say my parents. They were just always filled with grace, always loving, always supportive and would always find the best in every single person and every single situation.
What’s your best piece of advice?
Do what you really want to do, and follow your gut. Take chances.
What’s something that most people don’t know about you?
I have a business degree from The University of Alabama, but my first semester was in the school of home economics. (A good friend who ended up at Harvard Business School recommended I make the move from home ec to business after my first semester.) I love all things creative and “home,” so I am so blessed to combine my business education with my love of baking and creating. In today’s world of college counseling and tailored degrees, I think I would have been advised to do a double major in business/entrepreneurship and home economics.
Describe your perfect weekend.
In Boston, in the fall, with my daughter, going to the market and stopping by Flour, my favorite bakery
What are three things you can’t live without?
My MacBook, my protein bars to get me through to lunch and my paper planner — I have to have paper and pencil. I don’t use pens. I don’t use my phone. I have to write things down.
Thank you, Amy! To learn more about Cookie Fix, visit cookiefix.com.
See more inspiring Birmingham FACES here!