The Big Give Christmas Challenge is fundraising to support siblings caring for disabled and seriously ill children like Lyla and Talia; double your donation today.

I am a mother to two extraordinary girls. 

I have Lyla who is quiet and intriguing. Mesmerising to watch, she likes her own company and is very set in her ways. She knows what she wants but can't communicate her needs to us and can get easily frustrated. Because of her Autism, although she is six, she needs help with almost all of her day to day care. But she is a ray of sunshine and you can't help but smile when you’re around her. 

Then I have Talia who is loud and cheeky, she will feed herself, and help wash and dress herself. When she's hungry she will go to the snack cupboard and help herself to raisins or when's she's thirsty she will ask me for a drink please. She will look out for her older sister and try to tell her off with the Makaton sign for no if she knows Lyla is doing something she shouldn't be, yet Talia has only just turned two last month. 

I often feel guilty because from the moment Talia arrived, Lyla still had to come first and instead of the constant cuddles Lyla had as a baby Talia was left to entertain herself. By four and a half months she was crawling and by eight months she was walking. This was when we got a sense of how independent she was going to be. 

It was a difficult first year. Lyla took a while to get used to Talia, especially as she was so loud and as she started to talk and understand it took Talia a while to learn why Lyla never responded to her, or why she wouldn't play with her like her cousins did. But then of her own accord she started to help Lyla. 

If someone offered her a biscuit or a drink she will respond with "and Lyla”. She will carry Lyla’s food to the table for her.

If Lyla has a dirty nappy Talia will get a clean one from her bag. If Lyla gets distressed, Talia will get her the iPad. She will try and put Lyla’s shoes on for her and will put her hair bow back in if it falls out. 

At two years old Talia understands Pecs cards and the Makaton symbol for no. She knows that Lyla has a spot on the sofa and that the Waybuloo teddy’s are hers. She knows Lyla likes to have two Jaffa cakes and a whole apple. She will shut doors and stair gates behind her and she will try not to get in Lyla’s way but she will never ignore Lyla. She will always try and give her a cuddle or a kiss regardless of if she gets pushed away. 

She has had to attend countless appointments with us and sometimes have days in when it's school holidays as it's an impossible task for me to take them both out by myself, and whilst I would never expect her to help me with Lyla she does because she wants to. They say children lead by example and she has watched me and her daddy help care for Lyla every single day and she has naturally picked up on this. 

Now Lyla has a sister she will always have a friend and I couldn't be more proud of them both. 

You can follow Lyla and her photo journey for 2016 on Facebook or Instagram.

The Big Give Christmas Challenge gives you the chance to double your donation to Family Fund. For one week from 28 November, every donation we receive through the Big Give website will be generously matched thanks to this fantastic charity initiative. Donate now.