“You are my sun.”
Just this week, we celebrated the news that Young & Restless’ Christel Khalil (Lily) is about to expand her family – not with a new baby on the way, but with the news that she and her little one longtime friend Sam Restagno are now engaged! That’s great news, but we think it’s probably safe to say that her son, Michael Caden, will likely always be the number one little man in her life!
After: Melissa Ordway Thinks ‘Bad Abby’ Could Be Fun
Today, this little man is just a little taller, as he celebrates his 12th birthday. One more year until Khalil has a dreaded teenager in his house! Somehow, though, we have a feeling mom and son will do just fine into their teenage years and beyond. They share a heartwarming bond that shines through in every photo and post she shares.
Don’t believe us? Take a look at a collection of photos from birth to today and you’ll know what we mean!
An amazing start
For her son’s third birthday, Khalil traveled back to his birth. “Three years ago today my baby star was born at home in a birthing tub without medication,” she wrote. “It was the most amazing (and painful!) experience of my life and always will be. It’s been a long and hard road, but Michael, I love you more and more every day and I can’t wait. to experience life with you as you grow and learn in this beautiful world.
man of action
“The teacher asked, ‘What do you do with him because he’s ready for action?'” Khalil replied when Michael was only two years old. Well, judging by this pic, she gave him a scrub brush and put that action to good use! Gotta start that cleanup kick early!
It’s a tech world and he’s a tech boy. Fortunately, he had a little help from Kevin and Michael’s “little sister”! “Aunt Jessica Heap teaching Michael Man the ropes on the iPad mini,” Khalil wrote of Eden’s portrayer at the time.
After seeing this photo of “Michael Man getting his hair cut for the second time”, we have a very important question. Why don’t we all get in a toy car when we get our hair cut too??
Alright, this may have gotten a little messy, but it’s also totally adorable. “That’s what @imsoshort’s dog is teaching my son,” one happy mum shared. Well, it’s a good thing that, as she tagged, “#boyslovedirt!”
The spitting image
“I think it’s safe to say we look alike,” mom wrote of this 2014 photo of Michael and a very young Khalil. Look alike? They are practically twins a few decades apart!
The ladies’ little man
Michael made friends at a young age. Well, he was making friends and maybe some more. “I think my son knows she has a crush on him,” Khalil wrote of the two. And we could practically hear the slightest moan in her “voice” as she wrote it! Watch out ladies!
We ask you a question
Is that facial hair real or… OK, no, it’s not real, but it’s still adorable in that “regram” where mom wrote that “Me and my baby share everything.” Don’t worry, Michael, one day you will have your own mustache! And the overwhelming realization that you’ll have to shave every day for the rest of your life if you don’t!
“I think he’s a little excited to meet Superman and Wonder Woman,” Michael’s elated mom wrote. You know what? We think you are right. And honestly, we’d react pretty much the same if we met this pair in real life!
wish on a star
Mom and son capped off 2014 by putting the finishing touches on the Christmas tree they “finally got”. A tree by December 14? It’s not bad at all ! Some people don’t settle down until Christmas Eve!
Khalil loves to travel, which means Michael has had the chance to accompany her on all kinds of trips, like this 2015 trip to Oregon. “And we’re off,” mom wrote of this adorable airport pic. At five years old, her little man had already learned one of the most important rules of flight: always have headphones handy!
What do you do when you find out the birthday song is copyrighted? (Not anymore, though, it was revoked in 2015.) Compose your own sweet confection of a song to sing! “He can have all the sugar, because it’s his birthday,” Khalil wrote. “I love this little face and can’t believe he’s 5 today!”
Well, it seems Mom’s prediction was right! By age 5, Caden was on the dating scene! OK, we’re sure it wasn’t. that serious, but Khalil shared a photo from a birthday party, writing, “Those silly girls. Happy birthday Ella (2nd from left)! (Caden’s girlfriend aka)”
Slipping into primary school…
Caden slid all the way through his first “diploma” and clearly had a blast while he was doing it. “I can’t believe this is my love bug’s last day of kindergarten,” a misty-eyed Khalil shared.
…and on Prom?
Caden added some levity as Khalil geared up for the 2016 Daytime Emmys with pals Bryton James (Devon) and Sofia Pernas (ex-Marisa). “We couldn’t take a prom picture without him,” she joked of her son, “so we decided to embrace silliness!”
Yes, that seems like the right reaction for us when mom and son visited filmmaker Guillermo del Toro’s exhibit at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art! “I’m not going to lie, we were a little scared,” she admitted to one of del Toro’s scariest creations in the film, Pan’s Labyrinth!
Whew, after that horrible detour, a trip to Tulum to be “cleansed by a quartz crystal in the chime garden” sounds downright heavenly. And Caden and his mother looked beautifully serene.
Overflowing with love
There was no end of things for Khalil to celebrate the following Thanksgiving. His heart was so filled with gratitude for everything, from Young and restless to eat “healthy living by donating food and sharing this vacation with two people in my life who mean so much to me, Caden and Bryton James.”
lucky number seven
Caden’s 7th birthday may have had less sugar in it (or not!), but there was certainly just as much love and joy. “You are becoming such an amazing boy,” Khalil wrote, “and I’m proud to call you my son!”
Being from Los Angeles, Caden hasn’t had many opportunities to fully experience the wonders of winter. That is, until mom brought him to Toronto for a winter trip in December that ended up being “my boo’s first day of snow.”
A complete family
Then-boyfriend (and now fiancé!) Restagno joined mom and son for an absolutely gorgeous Valentine’s Day photo…complete with a random stick and a unicorn horn? “The only valentine I need,” Khalil wrote of his men. “Although I don’t know what Sam was planning to do with that stick?”
As close as ever
In August 2020, pretty much the whole world was in lockdown, and the pandemic was still as scary as it comes, but all that unity clearly didn’t dampen Caden and his mother’s joy. Khalil captioned the photo with three hearts and that’s all we needed to know about their romantic relationship.
After: Courtney Hope sends a heartfelt message to the support team
Can’t get enough mother/son relationships? Check out our now expanded gallery of stars of the day and their children.