This creative rocking chair might just be the perfect gift for all those grandparents out there.
Hal Taylor, a wood craftsman with more than 24 years of experience, loved storytime with his kids. But after his third child was born, he realized there was no more room to fit the kiddos on his lap and read a story. With a stroke of genius, Taylor designed and built the StoryTime Rocking Chair.
Here’s a photo of Taylor’s family in the first chair he built. As you can see, it’s perfect for accommodating several kiddos.
I originally thought this was a joke, kind of like an Olan Mills awkward family photo. But as you learn more about the chair, it’s obvious that it’s pretty remarkable. It has an extremely well-built frame, and it’s perfectly designed for a comfortable multi-kid reading experience.
Unfortunately, these rocking chairs are a tad expensive. It’ll run you around $8,000 to $9,500 for a chair, depending on the type of wood you choose.
The reason they’re so pricey because each chair is handmade for your specific family. In fact, Taylor even asks for your height and inseam measurements, along with a photo, when you place an order. That enables him to make a chair that will be comfortable and tailor-made for your body.
“I made a chair for a fellow in California who was built like a tank, wide abeam and muscular,” Taylor wrote on his website. “Thus, when I made his chair I made all of the parts a little heavier than I would normally and when he sent a photo of himself in his new chair they were a ‘perfect match.'”
The rockers are also very complex, with over 260 specific pieces that go into a single chair. “Every piece of wood in the chair is carefully matched!” Taylor wrote on his website. “The seat is bilaterally symmetrical as you can see from this photo. The joint is perfect because it is hand planed, which takes time.”
Yes, a handmade rocking chair like this is definitely an investment. But as Taylor wrote on his website, it’s a piece of furniture that is likely to become a family heirloom.
“Is it a lot of money?” he wrote. “YES but ask yourself this question. ‘Of all of the things I have spent money on in the last 20 years, how many of them will ever be used by my great grandchildren??’ This chair will!”
He makes a good argument!
And that precious quality time you spend with your grandchildren, whether reading to them in a custom rocking chair or just sitting and talking, isn’t just fun for them and for you, it’s actually good for your health.
It’s true: Recent research found that grandmothers who babysit their grandkids once a week scored higher on cognitive tests than those who aren’t regular caretakers.
The improved cognitive function that comes from babysitting grandchildren may play a role in preventing dementia and Alzheimer’s. However, there can always be too much of a good thing: Researchers also found that grandparents who take care of grandkids five or more days per week actually had lower scores on the cognitive tests, including lower working memory performance and processing speed.
That makes sense when you think about it. After all, while spending time with children can be stimulating and rewarding, it can also be physically tiring and mentally taxing.
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