A while back my nephew married a sweet, lovely girl from Japan. He moved there, and eventually they had a baby. (He's adorable.) Now they're back in the United States. I've known my niece-by-marriage for a while now, having met her when they were first dating. She's hysterically funny, often hyperkinetic in the best way, and very loving. She's phenomenal.
Her side of the family came to the US for their wedding, where I got to meet them. They wanted immediately to connect with us, and help grow the family. This shows in countless little ways.
For example, when Marybeth (my sister in law) visited them in Japan earlier this year, they tromped all over Kyoto looking for a painted fan for me with a copy of Hokusai's Great Wave Off Kanagawa on it, as a present for me. (It's my favorite painting.)
I love that these sweet, gentle, kind people are family to me.
Nowhere does this show more than the relationship between Marybeth and Y., my niece's mother. They're best buddies, co-grandma's together, and thick as thieves. She came back to the US with my niece and the baby. We're on vacation down in Florida visiting with them all.
I snipped this little picture of them out walking together this morning as I was out on my run, and it filled me with all sorts of joy.