Valentine's Day is "extra special" in Hoda Kotb's house.
The TODAY co-anchor says her daughter Haley Joy has a pair of birthdays.
“Haley has two birthdays," she told fourth hour co-host Jenna Bush Hager in January during a chat about her weekend plans. "The day she was born, the day she was born to us.”
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Friday on TODAY, Hoda informed Jenna and viewers that one of those days, Feb. 14, is about more than celebrating love in her household.
"It also happens to be when we celebrate the day that Haley came into our lives," she said. "It's her 'gotcha day.' It's the day that, for anyone who's ever adopted a child, there is a moment that is as close to a live birth as you're going to get to experience in your life if you haven't: It's when they place a baby in your arms, and you hold that child, and you say to yourself, 'Oh, my God, this is my child.'
"Valentine's Day for us is a little bit about the valentines but more about celebrating that moment."
“I've loved her ... I think since forever,” she said on TODAY after returning to work.
She certainly loves the little girl who made her a mother.
"This was truly a year when I figured out what mattered. I figured out what love really is," Hoda wrote in an essay at the end of 2017.
"It's the year that I figured out that there's a future ahead, beyond mine, that I care deeply about. This Valentine's Day baby changed everything."
As a mom of two, Hoda is not immune to shortcuts to help celebrate milestones. Case in point: The impromptu birthday party the family had for Haley in January.
“So I did something that was totally lazy. I’m gonna confess it right now,” she told Jenna last month.
“So someone at school sent one of those group emails to the parents: ‘Hey, it’s my son’s birthday. Would everyone like to meet in the park?’ Well, it happens to be Haley’s, too. So I’m like ... can I piggyback on that? So, I was like this: ‘Hey, guys! How about a double celebration?’ So now we’re all going to the park. I’m so excited.”
Jenna was certainly on board with Hoda’s plan.
“When I heard it, I was like, ‘That might be my New Year’s resolution: Make things easier for ourselves!' Why do we make everything so hard?” she said.
“You didn’t need to do your own party,” she added.
“We didn’t,” Hoda replied while laughing. “I said: 'Joel, guess where we’re going? The park at 10 a.m. It’s a birthday.'”