RANDOLPH - A first impression of 12-year-old Jonathan Schultz closely resembles that given by most boys his age.
He likes to play with his friends "after (his) homework is done," climb trees, swim and catch crayfish and go tubing in the creek. The difference in this young man is that he is an entrepreneur, who is learning the value of hard work in the sixth grade.
His mother, Rhonda Schultz, gave him the idea of baking and selling cookies after he came to her saying he needed to earn some money.
Jonathan Schulz, 12, of Randolph started J’s Jazzy Cookies recently as a way to save up some money. He also has been using the money earning for tithing at his church, Randolph First Baptist, and has donated some to a local Christian school.
Photos by Beverly Kehe-Rowland
"I had $100 from my birthday and it went down to $60 (after he had spent $40 for Christmas presents)," he said. "I wanted it to be a round number and go back to $100."
The duo decided which kind of cookies would be the best sellers, and that's when J's Jazzy Cookies was born. He started by taking orders door to door, as well as asking the people at the Randolph First Baptist church, where his father, Pastor Ken Schultz, preaches. He filled his order paper on both sides in just two days with orders for 500 chocolate chip, peanut butter and double chocolate cookies.
He and his mother worked diligently to fill all of the orders in a timely manner, placing a coupon in each order good for a free half-dozen with the purchase of two dozen cookies. J's Jazzy Cookies' dozen is actually a baker's dozen. Numbers 6:24 - "May the Lord bless and keep you, may He make His face to shine upon you." - is included with each order.
The young businessman has been tithing the first 10 percent of his profits and put money in a collection for a local Christian school. He spent a little of the money when he and a friend went to a local pizza shop for chicken tenders. He plans to spend about $30 when he is vacationing with his family.
"The first thing I remember making with my mom was no-bake cookies when I was in homeschool in first or second grade," he said. "When I was in the mood for it I would help my mom bake."
The cookie business is not the only business Jonathan has going. He sells wallets and bracelets, which he makes from duct tape, to his friends at school. These are not made from the boring silver duct tape that every man has stashed somewhere in his toolbox or workshop, but from brightly printed and colored duct tape. He has made roses from the strong sticky, cloth-backed tape and is hoping to add shirts and hats to his line.
He lists Randolph Teen Ministry - a youth group at his church where he plays games, eats snacks, sings and has a devotional time - as another interest. He also likes to act and sing and hopes to be a part of the drama club when he is in junior high school.
"I was the narrator for 'Stone Soup,' a play in kindergarten at my old school and played Candlewick in 'Pinnochio' in fifth grade," he said.
Science is his favorite subject at Gail N. Chapman Elementary School, where Mrs. Beaver is his homeroom teacher.
"I designed and built a container for the science class egg drop and the egg didn't break," he said.
He loves birds and animals and wants to be a veterinarian. Britt Nicole is his favorite singer, but he likes TobyMac, Natalie Grant and some things that Laura Story does, too. He used to be on the praise team at church and hopes to return soon. He likes Awana "a lot."
"I love roller coasters," he added. "Superman at Darien Lake is my favorite."
He also enjoys watching "What Would You Do?" on television and is really into The Hunger Games series.
The Schultz family has three more members: Matt, who is in fourth grade, and Mark, a kindergartner, as well as Jonathan's "sister," Sophie, the shih tzu.
He prefers his peanut butter cookies over the other varieties and his favorite foods are pizza, macaroni and cheese, and spaghetti. His mom helped by sharing some of her recipes. She says the cut-out cookies recipe is "a really good recipe, because it does not need to be refrigerated and is really good." She also said she tried a lot of banana bread recipes before hitting on this one.