Jenna Bush Hager’s daughters stole the spotlight when they joined her on the Today show on Monday morning.
The co-host, 36, explained that her two little ones, four-year-old Mila and two-year-old Poppy, didn’t have school on President’s Day, which is why she brought them with her to the studio.
Both little girls were initially sitting with their father, Henry Chase Hager, 39, in the audience, but when their mom acknowledged their presence, they decided to come up to her on air.
Company: Jenna Bush Hager’s daughters Mila, four, and Poppy, two, stole the spotlight when they joined her on the Today show on Monday morning
Holiday: The co-host, 36, explained that her two little ones didn’t have school on President’s Day, which is why she brought them with her to the studio
‘By the way, my kids are here today,’ Jenna said during the show’s fourth hour, which sees her filling in for Hoda Kotb next to Kathie Lee Gifford.
Most of the Today team is currently in PyeongChang, South Korea, covering the Olympics, which is why Jenna is currently assuming the role.
The audience responded by cheering while Jenna continued by asking Mila: ‘Are you raising your hands? Do you have something you want to say?’
It turned out Mila, who was sitting on her dad’s lap, did have something to declare, and she stated for everyone to hear: ‘Mama had a cat.’
Henry and the rest of the audience were slightly confused by the revelation, but Poppy took the moment as an opportunity to break away from her father and climb onto her mother’s lap.
She was soon joined by Mila, prompting Jenna to declare taking her daughters with her to work was ‘a terrible idea’.
Audience: Both little girls were initially sitting with their father, Henry Chase Hager, 39
Hi there! When their mom acknowledged their presence, they decided to come up to her on air, with Poppy leading the way
Declaration: When asked if she wanted to say something, Mila proclaimed: ‘Mama had a cat.’ She was later imitated by Poppy, and both sisters repeated the catchphrase with glee
Kathie Lee, however, delighted in the interaction and jokingly told Jenna: ‘You know what? You deserve this. This is what your parents said you did your whole life growing up.’
The audience erupted in laughter while Kathie Lee wisely decided to remove glasses of liquor that were left on the table from a previous segment, taking them away from the little girls.
‘I’m teaching my children so many important lessons, like booze on a Monday,’ Jenna pointed out.
The mother then asked the audience, with her two daughters still at her side: ‘Do any of you all ever feel like this, when you’re trying to do work and you have two kids hanging on you?’
At this point, Poppy, borrowing Mila’s catchphrase, chimed in to repeat: ‘Mommy has a cat!’
Karma: Kathie Lee delighted in the interaction and jokingly told Jenna: ‘You know what? You deserve this. This is what your parents said you did your whole life growing up’
It begs the question: Jenna declared she was sweating, then added: ‘At least they chose to say “Mommy has a cat.” What if they said something else?’
Parenting woes: The mom asked the audience whether they ever found themselves trying to do work while their little ones disrupted their schedule
Kathie Lee jumped at the chance to turn the sentence into a song, asking the audience to join in as she chanted: ‘Mommy has a cat, Mommy has a cat, I didn’t know that.’
The audience, naturally, joined in on the fun and clapped while repeating ‘Mommy has a cat’, while Poppy, visibly aware of the comical effect of the refrain, repeated it once more, quickly joined by her sister.
Jenna declared she was sweating, then added: ‘At least they chose to say “Mommy has a cat.” What if they said something else?’
She then encouraged the girls to go back with their father, but while Mila did walk back towards Henry, Poppy apparently wanted to stay with her mother and extended her arms to go back onto her lap.
Another member of Jenna’s family stepped in last week to provide the anchors with on-air material in the absence of the regular team.
Her mother Laura Bush, 71, paid a visit to her daughter on Tuesday morning, just in time to revisit some of her favorite romantic memories ahead of Valentine’s Day.
The former first lady was in New York City to celebrate Valentine’s Day with her grandchildren, Mila and Poppy.
Kathie Lee asked Laura to reminisce about several first times in her life, prompting Laura to open up about various memories ranging from touching to just plain funny.
Family time! Laura Bush paid a visit to her daughter on the Today show on Tuesday morning
Team: The former first lady joined Jenna and Kathie Lee during the show ‘s fourth hour, reminiscing about family memories
Laura reminisced about her first reaction when she found out she was going to have twins, back when she was pregnant with Jenna and Barbara.
‘I was so thrilled to have twins,’ she said. ‘I had sort of pictured two babies and thought “Well, that’s so greedy to want two at once.” But I was an only child and I really wanted to have more than one child so that they’d have each other, and of course that’s what really happened.’
Kathie Lee also asked Laura about the first time Jenna got grounded, joking it must have been one of many times the presidential daughter got in trouble.
‘When Barbara and Jenna were born, their grandfather was already vice president,’ Laura recounted. ‘And one of the things they did as soon as they learned how to dial the phone was call the White House switchboard and prank-call the White House.’
Officials, naturally, figured out where the call was coming from, and Jenna and Barbara became so afraid they would get spanked for misbehaving they put hardcover boots in their pants for protection, Jenna said.
The former first lady also revealed she and Jenna sometimes shared bras, since Jenna has the same silhouette as her mother.
‘She inherited the…’ Laura said before gesturing in front of her chest as if to suggest large breasts.
Jenna shrieked: ‘Mom!’ while the audience burst out laughing, and she added: ‘Remember when you taught me to love my body? Remember?’
The presidential daughter also revealed her mother had once asked her if she needed a new bra before telling her: ‘Here’s one of my minimizers.’
Conversation: Laura revealed she and Jenna used to trade bras. ‘She inherited the…’ Laura said before gesturing in front of her chest as if to suggest large breasts
Reaction: Jenna shrieked: ‘Mom!’ while the audience burst out laughing, and she added: ‘Remember when you taught me to love my body? Remember?’
As for the first time Laura spoiled her grandchildren, she said it happened in Maine, where the Bushes have their summer residence in Kennebunkport.
Laura couldn’t resist giving ice cream to Mila even though the baby was just three months old and hadn’t had food yet—something Jenna, Mila’s daughter, is still shocked by.
Since she will not be at home in Dallas, Texas, to spend February 14 with her husband, Laura revealed she has left him a sweet Valentine declaring her eternal love for him—which Kathie Lee jokingly deemed ‘so cheesy’.
Despite her kind attention, Laura doesn’t believe George W. Bush, also 71, will return the favor.
‘Needless to say, he did not leave me a Valentine,’ she said, adding that the former president is ‘not really’ a romantic.
However, Jenna pointed out that George and Laura are no strangers to romantic gestures, since they got married just three months after meeting.
She also said that her father spoke in poetry or rhymes throughout the first year of his and Laura’s marriage, with Laura saying he did so because ‘he was just so nervous’.