Mother-daughter team celebrates bookstore milestone
Earth Song marks 40 years in Del Mar, 2 with new owners
Del Mar’s Earth Song Bookstore may be celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, but for its current owners, the more special number is two.
That’s how long ago the mother-daughter tandem of Roza and Annette Palmer purchased the small coastal shop. It offers books on a variety of subjects, small gifts and even psychic readings. Annette, who graduated from UCSD in 2007, said she had been planning to run the store ever since she set foot in it, nearly half-a-decade earlier.
“I just fell in love with it,” she said of her first visit to the shop, during a 2003 vacation from Chicago. “Everything was different. It was dark and dank, but there was just something about it and as I turned to walk out I stood in the doorway and I made a wish, and I wished for this place to be mine.”
Four years and a communications degree later, that dream came true.
“I just finished school and I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life,” Annette said, adding she found out the bookstore was for sale on Craigslist. “I knew there were only two bookstores in Del Mar. I just had a feeling it was this one and fate had stepped into my life and I ran into my mom’s room that night and said the bookstore is for sale we have to buy it.”
But their venture did not start easily. The 2007 wildfires happened just three days after the purchase. Now, like nearly all family-run business, they are working to stay afloat in this recession.
“There are really good days and there are days when you think ‘Oh my god, how are we going to do this?’ and unfortunately with the bad economy you have more days where you go ‘oh my god’ than you go ‘oh yeah!’” Annette Palmer said.
Roza Palmer, Annette’s mother and business partner, has an engineering background. She has also never owned a business.
“Basically we went from love of books to owners of a bookstore — that’s all that happened,” she said.
Roza, originally from Russia, calls her daughter the creative force behind the business, adding she is always thinking of different things to bring in. This also includes allowing owners to bring their dogs inside the store.
“She’s great and I wouldn’t change it for a minute,” she said. “I would never want to have any other partner. We always got along great but this brought us even closer.”
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