When I was little, we'd visit my grandparent's farm for three weeks or so every summer. One of my favorite parts of those visits was waking up in the morning.
With no air conditioning (*gasp*), we left all the windows open all night. Mornings were damp and cool. There's a special feel to those cool mornings.
All the grandkids -- that would be me, my sister, my brother and my cousin -- would climb into bed with Grandma and Grandpa. Grandpa always kept a pot of coffee on his nightstand. We'd all snuggle in bed and smell Grandpa's pot of coffee brewing.
It was always the best way to start the day -- in bed with my grandparents, siblings and cousin.
For the past few mornings, Big M has been bringing Little M and Shaggy into our room in the mornings and we've all been snuggling together, hugging stuffed animals, giggling, hiding under blankets and generally enjoying being together. I'm sure Big M has an ulterior motive -- like making me get up in the mornings -- but I'm willing to sacrifice sleep to share these mornings with my children.
It's easy to become a family; you just pop out a kid or two. But creating the intimacy of family is something you have to work at daily. Although they never spoke the words to pass this bit of wisdom on to me, the actions and love of my grandparents gave me the foundation to appreciate this type of family intimacy and to pass it along to my own children.