Hoda Kotb was brought to tears by a surprise gift given to her from her longtime Today show co-anchor Kathie Lee Gifford, as Gifford prepares to end her 11-year tenure on the morning talk show.
During the series’ longtime “Favorite Things” segment, the two women spoke about some of their favorite products for the last time. The segment usually details Gifford and Kotb sharing some of the products they love for the month, which range from clothing to beauty products to books.
Along with several beauty items and books, Gifford took a moment to sneak in a surprise gift for her longtime friend, and it will likely be one of Kotb’s most favorite things ever.
As reported by Today, Kathie Lee surprised Hoda with a gift covered by a drape to celebrate 11 years “of the joy and honor” of sitting next to her. The cloth was uncovered to reveal a portrait of Kotb and her two-year-old daughter, Hayley Joy. Done by artist Sydney Clawson, the portrait showed Kotb hugging her gorgeous little girl.
Kotb was without words as she hugged her longtime pal for the generous and gorgeous gift that captured the joy she feels at being a mother.
Kotb and boyfriend Joel Schiffman adopted Hayley in 2017. Kotb was unable to conceive a biological child following treatment for breast cancer.
She recently told Entertainment Tonight that she and Schiffman are considering giving Hayley a sibling, but is unsure when that will happen.
“We like the idea of Haley [having] a sibling because she has had such interesting circumstances to grow up… So it would be nice to be able to share it with somebody.”
Gifford revealed she is leaving her post at Today to start up a new period in her life where she can focus on projects that she feels passionate about. In her formal on-air announcement in December 2018, Kathie Lee cited all the projects she has coming up as a reason for stepping down from her position, reported Good Housekeeping.
These include promotions for her upcoming film, Then Came You, and two books titled The Rock, the Road, and the Rabbi and The Gift That I Can Give. She also has her own GIFFT line of wine, her singing career, and a new move to Nashville to be excited over.
Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb will continue to co-host the fourth hour of Today through April 5. Jenna Bush Hager will step in as Gifford’s permanent replacement thereafter.