“In September, 2013, we left steady jobs, moved back to our hometown, and decided to do our own thing. We’re making every effort to live the simple, uncomplicated good life. And we’re grateful every single day that we’re hanging out as a family while making a living.
Zeb had been brewing his own beer for a while. And I’ve been making our family eat healthy, (mostly) unprocessed foods for a while. I started making my own soap to get away from bathing with harsh chemicals (because your skin absorbs all of that junk, you know). I kept working on the soap recipe but could never really get it to lather very well without using palm oil. (And I was trying to avoid palm oil since it’s linked to rainforest deforestation.)
I’d read that you could use beer in soap, and it could add more lather, but I didn’t want to waste a good beer on a bad batch of soap. A neighbor of ours was moving, and she gave us the entire contents of her refrigerator. In it was a Corona Light. So I used it in a batch of soap. It was a really rough, ugly batch of soap, but it lathered and moisturized well. Eventually, when I perfected the beer soap recipe, I “borrowed” a couple of pints of Zeb’s home-brewed beer to make a batch. Now we have 9 different types of Brew Bars based on different beers that Zeb has brewed.
And on August 1st, we launched the Redbeard Post Exchange (PX).
Essentially, through the PX, we’re compiling and curating a shop full of goods that are handcrafted by military veterans and/or their spouses. There’s a huge need for this that we’ve experienced personally; after military service (whether veterans have seen combat or not), the transition into the civilian workforce is difficult, if not impossible for some. “Ordinary” jobs (and often daily life) seem meaningless, and everyday encounters are extremely difficult to navigate. By giving veteran artisans a support base in the form of a shop that promotes and sells their wares, we’re hoping to give them a livelihood that is sustainable and purposeful for them. You know — through the act of creation, we honestly believe that we are able to reclaim some of ourselves.
It’s hard to leave the brotherhood of the military. That brotherhood can’t be recreated elsewhere. But our goal is to be a support base for people that are going through the same things we did as a family when Zeb got out of the Marines. (Zeb was a Recon Scout Sniper with the US Marine Corps for eight years.)
If you would like to know more about these amazing Brewbars then Click here