Lily loves band-aids for fashion and because she has eczema and likes to cover up the bad spots.
I put my baseball cap on and, since I've let my hair grow out, it mushes all my hair under it.
Ryan: You look like you have a squished head.
Me: Ryan...that's just my hair being squished. Why don't you say I have a lovely head or something nice like that?
E: Daddy! I was JUST about to say you have a lovely head.
As my two boys got older, I realized that children, no matter how kind or loving, can often be very, very stubborn.
And then Lily came along...and I learned that I had no idea what stubborn was.
I was recently walking to the grocery with Lily and noticed that the flowers are starting to bloom. I decided I would get her to lean in and smell some flowers while I took a picture. What a beautiful spring moment that would be!
We came upon some tulips and I took out my phone (camera.)
Me: Lily, do you want to smell the pretty flowers?
Me: If you lean in and smell the flowers I'll take a picture and then you can see it! Won't that be nice?
Me: Aw...c'mon Lil...I know you want to smell the flowers!
Lily: No! No! No!
Me: Fine. Let's go to the grocery then.
(We walked about a half a block.)
Lily: I will smell this bike.
E saw a TV show about the turkey vulture, which, as a means of defense, sometimes regurgitates on an intruder that gets too close to their nest.
E: It would be nice to be a turkey vulture because if someone isn't nice you could just throw up on them.
I made a tent in the house so they could hang out and watch movies together. We go to the park and they run around together. (E and Lily are pictured exploring E's "secret palace" in the park.) They were sitting next to each other in the car recently and E was reading her a book.
Whenever E does something, if Lily is not with him, all I hear is "Wait for me EEEE-than! Wait for me!"
Of course, like all brothers and sisters, they get in a fight every 30 minutes or so, but they have definitely become best friends.
One of Ethan's best friends at school is also named Ethan. We had the other Ethan over for a playdate and the two Ethans and Lily were having quite a good time. She went to do something else for a moment, however, and lost track of where they were.
Lily: Daddy, where is Ethan and more Ethan?
Lily loves the movie Kung-Fu Panda. She'll watch it and jump around the room kicking and swinging and screaming HI-YAA! (It's sort of like Yoda with a high-pitched voice.) Lily is very small, even for her age, and a small three-year old trying to be tough is really kind of hilarious. It may be time to take a break from Kung-Fu Panda, however.
I was laying on the couch.
Me: Yes, Lil.
Lily: (she looks me dead-seriously in the eyes) Let's fight.
We have never explained to E that his brother has autism. Recently, however, E seemed very frustrated and disappointed that Ryan didn't want to play with him, so I decided maybe it was time to try to explain it to him.
Me: E, you understand that Ryan is different from you right?
Me: I mean, Ryan is different from you and a lot of other children.
E: What do you mean?
(Uh-oh. He doesn't see it.)
When we are sitting at the dinner table, Ryan mostly sits quietly while Lily and E talk non-stop. But in a rare moment of silence recently, Ryan chimed in.
Ryan: Vertebrates have a back bone and invertebrates do not have a back bone.
Mom: That's right, Ryan. Very good.
E: (clearly not paying any attention) Wait, invertebrates don't have a home?
There is a little boy in Lily's class of 3-4 year olds that goes to occupational therapy for communication issues. He has been scared to go and participate in the activities, so the teachers decided to ask a student to accompany him...and they picked Lily!
Her teacher told me that they chose her because she gets along really well with all her classmates and is always laughing and having a great time at school. They thought she'd make it easier for him. I'm so proud. Go Lily!
The best part was when the teacher and I were speaking in the hallway outside of her class and she had just finished talking about how much fun Lily has, Lily walked up to us with a crazy packing-tape monkey mask saying "OOO-OOO-AAA-AAA!"
I have three children: Ryan (12), Ethan (9) and Lily (6). One is autistic, one gifted and one adopted. This is a record of some of the amazing things they say and do. I try to stop and look around at least once a day.