Connect with us

Business

“I Have No Idea What I’m Doing”

Published

on

Good day Beartarians! Wiscobear here to share a little of my story.

I don’t often sit down and think about how I ended up where I am, but when I did to write this article I couldn’t stop smiling at how obvious it is that God’s been leading this whole journey. In the moment it never really felt like it. I often fought with God and tried on multiple occasions to walk away from this path. Spoiler alert: I eventually gave up and decided to trust him. My life motto that I’ve acquired over these last few years is “I have no idea what I’m doing”. I want to brand that and slap it on business cards and t-shirts…. it’s funny because it’s true. But something I’ve come to discover is that you don’t really need to know because God’s in control anyway. My parents and I own a tea shop in a small Wisconsin college town known as Ripon. We’ve been at it for 4 years. But this story is about my journey to becoming a kombucha brewer and it starts about 2 years ago…

There’s SO MUCH that has happened that I want to share with you all, and maybe in the future I will. But I think for now I don’t need to focus on all of the details and trying to get all the stories in. Because the journey was never about all the things that happened, and all the things I went through to get where I am. It’s about how God has been growing me all along the way. It’s about overcoming self doubt, taking steps of faith, and seeing Him work amazing things.

My story is not about me at all, but about how God can use a regular, small town girl to do something kind of cool.

I started my adventure brewing kombucha as a joke. A friend brought me the supplies to try my hand at it, and I gave it a shot as something to occupy my free time. Obviously I didn’t know what I was getting myself into. I quickly found out that the product I was making was wanted by my town. It became popular enough for my little hobby to grow beyond just brewing one gallon every week or so, to having two, 7 gallon batches on constant rotation. So I was blessed with success, but I didn’t know what I was supposed to do with it. Kombucha is just now starting to become popular in Wisconsin. My state has 2 major breweries and a handful of smaller ones, but more importantly there are no other handcrafted brewers close to my town. So being a business woman I saw the opportunity to get in on the ground floor and establish my brand before the inevitable health fad swept our way. If I didn’t, someone else would, and I knew if that happened I would regret not taking my chance.

Life is never that simple though. Even though the business prospect motivated and challenged me, I was wrought with self doubt and insecurity. I’m a perfectionist, especially when it comes to my work. I want to be the best at whatever it is that I’m doing at the moment, so when it came to kombucha I wanted to be the best brewer with the best product and the best business. I wanted to outshine every other brewery in existence, anything short of extraordinary would be failure to me. Now obviously that’s extremely selfish and messed up in many ways, but that’s not how I saw it. I genuinely felt that if I wasn’t doing my absolute best and sinking every last piece of myself into brewing a product that stood out from the rest, then there was no point in trying. This pursuit of perfection and struggle with self doubt led to eventual burnout.

But along the way God used every single thing that happened to grow and strengthen me.

I had people try to steal my recipe and brewing secrets – that taught me how to protect my business and showed me that I must be doing something right if people are trying to copy my ways.

I got involved in a very dysfunctional business partnership – this taught me to never compromise on my beliefs or my family, and to always trust my gut instinct. Ironically it’s also how I acquired the name “Honest & True”.

My business moved locations twice in 4 months – this was just all out tiring but showed me how God’s hand was in control of everything.

The health department shut down my operation for almost 6 months because I didn’t have paperwork I wasn’t aware I needed – this was ultimately what made me face myself and wrestle with why I was on this path. It also taught me not only how to work in, but also around, the beast system that we live in.

These are just a few of many things that led me to finding myself sitting alone in my shop, in March of this year, a day after Wisconsin announced their state wide shutdown for coronu. I had spent my time, energy, savings, and every bit of myself to invest in this business. And suddenly I was here, still shut down by the health department, sitting in a quiet storefront making $0 a day. I was done. Why had I just gone through everything I did to end up here? What’s the point of that? I looked out my windows at the eerily empty streets and asked God for guidance. I can’t explain what happened, but I suddenly understood. I just… got it. My business is, and never was mine. It’s God’s, I’m just the person that’s supposed to take care of it. I didn’t need to worry about losing it because if I did that would be okay, God has the authority to decide if it’s done. But I don’t have the right to complain or worry if I wasn’t going to do what I knew I was supposed to be doing – brewing.

I remember looking back to the windows of my brewing room and realizing how long it had been since I brewed a batch. I let the struggles and the stresses take the joy out of my craft. I saw it as a burden instead of a blessing. A fire was lit in me. That day I brewed my first batch in months, and a week later when I advertised it on social media it sold out by the end of the day. Ever since then I no longer struggle with that nagging feeling of self doubt. Because I’m not doing this to make a name for myself, I’m just here to make a good product for as long as God allows. The name “Honest & True” adorns my windows and business cards as a reminder to be just that, in all areas of life. I want people to see those words and know that they are getting a product made with integrity. And in times such as these, nothing is more valuable and cherished than that. I’m not the greatest brewer and I genuinely never really know what I’m doing. I’m not that successful, most months I don’t even know how I’ll pay rent. But somehow I always do.

All I know is, when you give up control, let God lead, and stand for truth; he can lead you down some amazing paths.

So bears, for me it was kombucha. What is it for you?

*You can find Honest and True at:
Address: 211 Watson St. Ripon, Wi. 54971
Email: honestandtrue.wi@gmail.com
Facebook: Honest & True Tea
Instagram: Business page: @honestandtruewi Kombucha page: @honestandtruekombucha
Website: currently unavailable (Looking for a bear web designer!)

Business

Smell Like a Bear? There’s a Bear for That…

‘Who makes soap? Body wash? Toothpaste? Mouthwash? Shampoo? Conditioner? Deodorant? Beard products?’

Published

on

By: Purple Bear

Ever since joining the Bear community, when I meet a high-morality person with a skill or small business, I like to support it. Even when they tell me, ‘Nah, man, I’ll just give you some!’ But that’s part of why they deserve to be supported. I’ll accept the generosity of a gift, but eventually, I want to send my energy to my in-group. Not some stranger. Not some foreign entity. Not some commercial product using ingredients you’ve never seen in nature. I want someone real with something real to support. And there’s no one more real than the Bears! No exaggeration. 

So with that mindset, look around your home. What are you buying from the store that, in all honesty, you don’t need to be this commercial-constant staple in your day-to-day? Is it made in your nation? Can you identify the ingredients? Would your ‘continuing to buy it’ not only feed a problem outside of you but feed a problem inside you? Wouldn’t it be great if you could just ‘have a Bear’ for all these things you keep getting by habit? And not only is it healthier or of higher quality, you just helped a good family. 

For me, the simplest thing was hygiene products. Of course, we guys will just buy whatever so we can go back to work without people nagging about how work makes us smell. But the ‘just buy whatever’ can easily be switched to ‘just buy Bear stuff.’ Easy, right? 

So I got on the app and said, ‘Who makes soap? Body wash? Toothpaste? Mouthwash? Shampoo? Conditioner? Deodorant? Beard products?’ And in minutes, someone commented with an answer. So one great confidence you can have is there’s a Bear for everything good and valuable! And every connection is a bridge worth trying to build. 

Maggie’s Home Essentials was the most frequent answer to my question. Maggie is @MaggiesHomEssentials on the Beartaria app and has her website here with all her products that Bears and non-Bears can shop. All her stuff is homemade and natural. You can look at each item on her site and see the small number of simple ingredients, all readily recognizable in nature. Now, sure, her designs have pretty flowers on them. But guys, they get the job done! The people nagging about your post-work smell will stop their whining and leave you alone! And look what you’d be supporting: The in-group. 

I made a post on the app reviewing some of the things I bought from Maggie over the course of a year, and the Beartaria Times Editorial staff were nice enough to reach out and suggest I turn it into an article. And here we are. As for my review post, here it is: 

“I wanted to review some @MaggiesHomEssentials products I bought this year. Most of these come in different fragrances for men and women. I’m a man, so the scents I went with are mostly sandalwood, I think. Except for the toothpaste, that one is peppermint.  

Shampoo: It does the job just fine. It’s watery, but it lathers (Castile base with coconut milk), so you’ll get plenty of use out of it despite how small the current bottle size is. 

Conditioner: Also does the job. Maggie went out of her way to make this liquid version of her ‘conditioner bar’ when I suggested it. It’s much better than the bar, in my opinion. 

Deodorant Stick: The paste is excellent, though it’s a bit softer than expected, so you might notice the stick squish faster than a commercial stick. This brings me to the… 

Deodorant Paste: This is just the paste in a little container, which is better for how soft it is, in my opinion. The stick kind of makes you accidentally use too much if you’re rough with it 

Deodorant Spray: Another way to get the job done, albeit not as manly. Just do it quickly! 

Mouth Wash: Our own natural mouthwash! This was another one Maggie went out of her way to make. This first one has a kind of salty taste to it, but it works fine. No burn. 

Body Wash: This one crushes as a general body wash, but it also works as a shampoo if you want something that has multiple uses. This one also lathers, if I remember correctly. 

Mustache Wax: I mainly got this out of curiosity because I’ve never messed around with beard products. If you like beard wax, I’m sure you’ll like it. I guess I just don’t need it. 

Beard Balm: I still don’t quite get the point of balm, but I’m glad I tried it. It’s firmer than I expected, but I guess this helps with split ends and stuff. I’m not sure. Sorry, haha. 

Beard Oil: I like this one best. I wore it to a Bear’s wedding! The lid has an eye dropper, so you can put as much or little in your beard as you like. I may use this more, allegedly. 

Charcoal Toothpaste: Finally, some stuff I know for sure doesn’t have any bad ingredients in it. If you know, you know! You might have a spoon or something near the sink to get it out. And rinse really well!

Bar Soap: Good bar soap. This was a free gift in one of my orders. She does that a lot! 

Exfoliating Pine Tar Soap: I’ll be honest I haven’t tried this yet, but it looks cool, and it has good stuff in it, like goat milk and charcoal. You know, the good stuff! But in soap! 

Conditioner Bar: I much prefer the liquid conditioner, mainly because you have to keep the bar in the fridge. But I also found this one very waxy and hard to fully get off the hair and hands after putting it on. I guess if you want your hair to be a little shapable or have that sort of wax sheen to it, this is fine. Me, I’m sticking with the liquid version. Which also has a LITTLE bit of that wax feel but not nearly as bad. Maggie is accommodating on the app, so just message her for feedback, and she’ll crush new methods! 

Overall Opinion: Maggie’s products are great if you’re looking for alternatives to stuff you buy at the store. She listens to feedback and suggestions from her customers and even throws in free gifts with your orders! Good stuff. I’ll buy from her again for sure.

Continue Reading

Business

Brett Pike- Founder of ClassicalLearner.com Launches New YouTube Channel

Homeschools Connected covers classical education and the classical trivium, Montessori, Charlotte Mason, and Unschooling.

Published

on

Homeschools Connected covers everything homeschool, homeschooling, alternative education, and parenting. Brett Pike is the founder of the Classical Learner Homeschooling company, the creator of the Classical Learner homeschool curriculum, and the author of the Cubs to Bears children’s book series. Homeschools Connected covers classical education and the classical trivium, Montessori, Charlotte Mason, and Unschooling.

In the first video, he covers Homeschooling, unschooling, and following the interest of your children to get them entrepreneurial experience. A talk on how to unschool, homeschool tips, and alternative education. How to follow the interest of your child, develop skills, and get them real-world experience. Children should have experience being an entrepreneur long before they have to decide if college is the path they want to take in life.

Find the new channel here:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCG3g-dVwW6_sO9JQl_17lJw/featured

Find Brett’s website here:

https://classicallearner.com

Continue Reading

Business

From Cows to Canoes, From Zion to the Ozarks

Published

on

I was there for everyone’s worst day. After 15 years of working as a first responder (3 years as an EMT, 12 years in law enforcement), I was well versed in working with the public. Unfortunately, for me to interact with this public, someone had to call 911 for police or an ambulance and that almost always constituted that someone’s worst day was about to occur; whether loss of life, property or freedom. Many times, men and women in those roles of our first responders can get caught up: caught up in feeling not appreciated by a society who is taught to hate them, caught up in feelings of being overwhelmed, tired and stressed. The saying goes “Try not to take your work home with you.” But sometimes the work follows you. Sometimes, the same people you have arrested for a crime, figure out where you live. Sometimes, the stress of almost losing your life that day, causes you to be checked out at home. Sometimes, you can’t find the words to explain the traumas you have seen, and you feel alienated from your family who can’t fathom what you have been through, even if they are trying really hard to provide support.

It was time for me and my family to heal. I left law enforcement and the city and moved to my family’s cattle ranch in Utah. Being surrounded by family, cows and Zion canyon desert helped me to find myself again. I was able to appreciate the daily interactions with people and learn to stop looking over my shoulder. I was able to learn so many skills that have been neglected working 12 hour shifts 4 days a week for 15 years. I was truly present in my kids’ life and was able to appreciate the importance of family and working with my hands.

Our family’s cattle ranch is being sold. There are multiple facets that lead to this decision: family dynamics at play, government regulation with the sale of meat, drought. We will miss our ranch immensely and look back on those years spent there fondly as it was equal parts harsh and unforgiving and beautiful and rewarding.

Our next adventure is something we have thought of doing for the past 10 years but didn’t even know where to begin. There are moments it has truly felt heaven sent and guided by God. We are now the proud owners of Beaver Creek Campgrounds, Cabins and Canoe Rentals in Ava, Missouri. We made the difficult trek from Utah to Missouri, spent our time simultaneously moving, selling property, learning and taking ownership of a brand-new business. It has tested our strength, patience and endurance, much like the ranch did for us.

We are a family-friendly campground, located right on Beaver Creek and next to Mark Twain National Forest. 

We offer:

  • Canoe, kayak and paddle board rentals.
  • Tent camping and 3 concrete pads with 30-amp electrical hook up for smaller RVs/ travel trailers.
  • 1 cabin that sleeps 12 with bathroom and outdoor kitchen
  • 2 rustic cabins that sleep 4 with electricity
  • 1 cabin that sleeps 2 with full amenities including a kitchenette and personal bathroom.
  • All of our cabins overlook the creek.
  • We have a small general store.
  • We even have 2 covered wagon rooms with air conditioning.

Since we have been here, there have been amazing neighbors that have offered their assistance in any way possible to transition our new lives here. Running a campground will be a learning experience for us and I am sure there will be lots of failures, I hope the successes can be enough to keep us pushing forward. I am ready to now be there for everyone’s best day.

We hope to see you at our campground and be a part of this journey with us.

www.beavercreekcampground.com

For reservations, please call or text: 417-796-2336

Use discount code Beartaria for 10% off on lodging accommodations

By Perspective96Bear

Continue Reading

Trending

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website.