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A place to relax

Tehachapi Natural Market

"I guess there are never enough books." –John Steinbeck

"Fill your house with stacks of books, in all the crannies and all the nooks." –Dr. Seuss

The musings and orders of Steinbeck and Seuss have certainly come to life at Tehachapi Natural Market. What was once only a vision is now reality inside the four walls of this thriving business dedicated to health and wellness. Co-owner, Sarah Rose explains her vision and how it came to be.

"I've always loved books and could spend hours in bookstores, especially used bookstores. There's just something about the energy, the vibe of a used bookstore that is irresistible to me," she said. "I knew from the day that I partnered with Teresa that we would have a book nook here in the store, but other tasks have been more pressing so I didn't get to it."

A recent trip to Follow Your Heart, a health food market in Canoga Park, changed all that.

"I was like a kid in a candy store when I went to there," Sarah said. "My head was on a swivel trying to take it all in. When I reached their book corner in the back of the store I knew there was no more procrastinating on our book nook. It had to be done now."

Luckily for the market, located at 20221 W. Valley Blvd., naturopath and life coach Jim Pickerell had offered the store the option to sell his personal collection of health and wellness books.

"Jim showed up with boxes and boxes of books," Sarah laughs. "It was a little overwhelming but exciting at the same time. We've rounded out Jim's collection with other books we've purchased from a few other parties plus we've had some awesome titles donated to us by folks who are as enthusiastic about the book nook as we are."

But books alone were not enough to complete Sarah's vision.

"I didn't want to just sell books," she explains. "People can buy used books anywhere. I wanted to create an experience for our customers. I wanted to provide a place of respite, a comfortable place to linger while enjoying whatever delicious juice or smoothie they've chosen."

One visit to the market will confirm that she has done just that. Two large bookcases are the focal point of the nook. Light from a nearby window floods the area that is outfitted with what Sarah calls, "the world's most comfy chair," and a multi-colored rug that spoke to her "inner hippie." A quiet water fountain, salt lamp and essential oil diffuser lend to the Zen energy she wanted to channel.

While the books are used, Sarah was excited to show us the new journals that she brought in.

"For me, writing and reading often go hand in hand, especially when reading non-fiction or any kind of self-help book. I wanted to be sure that our customers would have access to journals as well as books."

So while the books might not be the sole focus of the book nook, there are fantastic titles and health resources on the shelves. If you're a book lover and a seeker of knowledge of health related issues (mental, spiritual and physical) you will surely find a title to take home with you...along with that juice, smoothie or acai bowl!