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Hoda Kotb celebrates release of new children's book 'You Are My Happy' inspired by daughter Haley Joy

Hoda's new children's book "You Are My Happy" is inspired by her bedtime routine with daughter Haley Joy.
/ Source: TODAY

Hoda Kotb celebrated the release of her new children's book on Tuesday by reflecting on the special person who inspired it — her daughter, Haley Joy.

The TODAY co-anchor's second children's book, "You Are My Happy," is inspired by Hoda's nightly bedtime routine with Haley, who just celebrated her second birthday last month.

"That time at night is so incredibly special to me,'' Hoda said on TODAY Tuesday. "I feel like I just don't want to waste it."

The book tells the story of a mama bear and her cub cuddling together before bedtime and reflecting on everything in life that makes them happy.

"You Are My Happy" is illustrated by Suzie Mason, who also did the illustrations in Hoda's first book, the New York Times best-seller "I've Loved You Since Forever." Her inaugural book, which she called "an ode to Haley Joy," is about the love between a parent and child.

"You Are My Happy," by Hoda Kotb, $13, Amazon

Hoda's nightly routine with Haley has become a cherished part of her day, and she wanted her new book to reflect that special time.

"Every night before I put her down, I always say to her, 'You know what my favorite time of the day is?' And I would just say, 'Right now,''' Hoda said. "About a week ago, I'm changing her and I'm putting her down for bed and I say, 'Haley do you know what my favorite time of the day is?' And she looked at me and she goes, 'Right now.'

"And I thought that night time is so intimate and so special. The book is really just about saying thank you for the little, tiny things."

The little moments throughout the day, like watching Haley chase butterflies or bubbles, can be the most "magical," Hoda believes.

Hoda became a first-time mother in 2017 at 52 when she adopted Haley, changing her life forever. They have had countless special moments together, whether it's walking on the beach, hunting for Easter eggs, or getting a sweet surprise on Mother's Day.