Supermodel Tyra Banks has popularized the phrase “smize” over the years — a term she coined for her uncanny ability to smile with her eyes. And it appears her 17-month-old son York has followed in her footsteps!
“I am not a stage mom. I don’t want you to think I’m like, ‘You ain’t going to get no peas and carrots if he don’t smize.’ He just has that natural thing,” the 43-year-old America’s Got Talent host told Meyers. “I had it when I was young too.”
That doesn’t mean Banks wants York to follow in her career path. “I do not want him to model, Lord,” she said. “But he had that thing. Look at him. He’s like, ‘Hellooo. I am smizing.’ “
He’s not just good at smizing. In June, Banks told PEOPLE York has quickly become “Mommy’s little helper.”
“He’s in love with his baby-sized broom,” she revealed. “Right now, he is into everything and anything, especially stuff he can push or move, so his curiosity is constantly making me laugh.”
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York was born in January of 2016 via gestational surrogate. Banks, who is also returning to host the next cycle of America’s Next Top Model, shares him with her Norwegian photographer boyfriend Erik Asla.
Elsewhere on her visit to Late Night, Banks revealed why she waited over a year to share a photo of York — and why she kind of regrets it.
“It wasn’t so much as I was itching for the world to see him,” she said. “I went to a restaurant on Father’s Day with my son and my dad. It was by the ocean, and my son … wanted to get in the water for the first time. I slathered him with sun screen … and he was just looking crazy. He got slammed with waves, sand everywhere.”
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As Banks departed the beach, she was spotted by paparazzi who proceeded to snap pictures of her and her son despite her best efforts to hide him with a blanket.
“I pull over to the gas station after they get their shot, and I text his dad and I’m like, ‘I got to put this picture out before the paparazzi. I don’t want them to make money off my child’s first picture. I want to beat them to the punch,’ ” Banks explained. “So I post that picture.”
Banks would learn the next day that her efforts were for naught. “Ain’t no paparazzi pictures because mama knew how to hide him from that camera,” Banks recalled. “She’s a supermodel for a reason! And so now his picture’s out there and I didn’t need it to be!”