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Alyson Hannigan Offers Mom Advice to Her 'HIMYM' Character

Whether it's Buffy's BFF Willow or Michelle from band camp in American Pie, mom-of-two Alyson Hannigan has been on our pop-culture radar since the '90s. Now as Lily Aldrin—half of one of the cutest couples on TV—she's about to close out her eight-year stint on the popular sitcom How I Met Your Mother, which kicks off its final season on CBS on September 23.

Hannigan spoke to mom.me over email about her new partnership with Tylenol's Smiling It Forward campaign. (The company will donate $1 to Children's Health Fund (an organization that provides health care services to underserved kids) for each smile photo uploaded to the site, up to $100,000.) She also chatted about her two girls—4-year-old Satyana and 1-year-old Keeva; the last season of HIMYM; and the new-mom advice she'd give to her character, Lily.

How did you get involved with the Smiling It Forward campaign?

Partnering up with Tylenol on Smiling It Forward was a no-brainer for me. I am obsessed with sharing photos of my kids, and I’m really excited to see the photos uploaded by all the moms and dads out there. And now we get to do it for a good reason!

Do your daughters have special requests from you when they're sick (to get them to smile)?

I can tell right away when my daughters aren’t feeling well. Their energy goes way down and their cheeks flush. When they aren’t feeling well, we spend a lot of time cuddling. There is this bean bag chair that we curl up on, and we bring out the chicken soup, and we read a lot of books.

Also, Keeva is teething and I feel so bad for her! We are in one of those crazy, sleepless phases. My pediatrician mentioned that we could use Infants Tylenol for the pain, which I didn’t realize, and that has helped a lot. She also has her blankie and we just snuggle.

Getting a new sibling can be fun but also hard. Did you and your husband (fellow actor Alexis Denisof) do anything special for Satyana when Keeva was born?

I was worried about sibling rivalry because I am an only child and I didn’t have much experience with having two kids around. I asked for a lot of advice. Some of the best advice I received was to give a gift to my older child from the baby to show her the baby was great to have around. We put up a big play structure in the backyard and said it was from the baby. We were planning on doing it anyway, and it was great timing because we knew we would be at home a lot with the new baby. I wanted Sati to think, hey, it’s great having a baby around!

MORE: What to Do When Your Kids Don't Get Along

What advice would you give new HIMYM mom Lily?

To just enjoy every moment of being a mom. It all goes by so fast, and you’ll miss everything—even the hard times—when they are over. Being a mom is the single best thing I have ever done in my life.

(A question from one of our readers): Is your relationship with your husband anything like the relationship between Lilypad and Marshmallow?

I’m really lucky because I have two of the most wonderful husbands. Alexis is the best husband and dad. He’s an actor, too, and a great storyteller. He makes up these elaborate stories with characters that have amazing accents. Our kids love it! And, Jason (Segel) is just so much fun to work with every day; I just adore him.

The writers of the show often base story lines on their own experiences or stories they hear. For example, the sleep deprivation that Lily experienced last season—that really was me. I came back to work soon after Keeva was born, and I really did have pregnancy brain.

We learned who the mom is on HIMYM last season. Is there anything else you can tell us about the show's upcoming final season?

I haven’t asked about all that is going to happen in the final season because I know I need to keep it a secret, and I’m not good at that. But Cristin Milioti is great (as the newly revealed mom), and it’s going to be fun having her on the show this year. It’s bittersweet that this is the last season—I think it is going to fly by.

How old will your girls have to be before you let them see American Pie?

No idea. Ask me in a few years!

MORE: Julie Bowen Spills on What She Was Like Before and After Twins

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