Edward and Edwin

You may not know it – but we all owe a debt of gratitude to Edward and Edwin! Two American cousins, Edward Knabusch and Edwin Shoemaker made the first recliner in 1928. It was made of wooden slats (so you can imagine how comfortable that was). The next year, they went on to create the first upholstered reclining chair. The patent for this invention became known as the “La-Z-Boy recliner. And I guess you could say – the rest is history! Most of us have recliners in our house. Steve and I have matching ones – then, there’s the older one that’s still here, plus both ends of the couch recline – let’s just say, these “anything, but lazy” cousins made a difference in our decor. But there’s more – there are reclining seats on airplanes, in cars, and even movie theaters have jumped on the band wagon, offering recliners to go along with the popcorn and movie.

What is it about the recliner that we love so much? While it’s nice to sit with your feet on the floor, ahh – to prop them up is so much better! And, why is it so hard to fall asleep in a nice flat bed, but let me get laid back in my chair and I’m a “goner!” When Steve takes his glasses off and lays back in his chair, I know that a nap is in his near future. There’s just something about falling asleep in your chair. It’s sooooo nice! Maybe it’s because you can’t toss and turn in a chair? (Can you tell that I got up in the middle of the night and ended up sleeping in my recliner?)

Recliners are also wonderful because they have these lovely big arms that others can sit on. My little Sophie (4 lb. Papillion dog) sits on the left side whenever I’m sitting down – that is unless Aiden is here. Then, he says that is “his spot” and poor Sophie gets moved over to the right side. One day I was commenting on how tall Aiden was getting and he said, “I’m getting taller, Gammy, so you don’t have to lean over so much to hug me.” But, oh the seriousness on his face when I said, “Does that mean that you’ll get to big to sit in “your spot in Gammy’s chair?” He wasn’t impressed with that idea because we have spent so many wonderful hours sitting together.

And think of all of the inventions that have been made because of the recliner – TV trays, laptop computers – even TV remote controls enable you to change channels without getting out of your “chair” (of course, when I was a child – I was the remote! The children always got to get up and change channels – am I right?) Many living rooms are designed around “the chair” and the ability to see TV.

It’s amazing how one invention can change so much. While you may not be an “inventor,” your actions do make a difference. How you dress, how you talk, what you do – others are watching, whether you want them to do so or not. Could the kindness you share, your Christian example, and your commitment to following the “Great Commission” by teaching and baptizing those that you come in contact with as you go into all the world, change lives? Thank you Edward and Edwin – it looks like you weren’t so “La-Z” after all! Simply blessed, Courtney

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