Katherine Heigl shot to fame with her starring role on Grey’s Anatomy and in films like Knocked Up. But her career was soon dogged by rumors that she was “difficult” to work with, and for a time she took a break from acting. Now, Heigl has clapped back at the rumors, and is back in the spotlight with her Netflix series Firefly Lane.
After being put through the mill of the Hollywood machine, Heigl seems to appreciate her more low-key private life, focusing on raising her children with her husband. Here is everything to know about Katherine Heigl’s surprising and sweet private life with her kids.
Meet Katherine Heigl’s children
In 2007, Katherine Heigl married country music singer Josh Kelley. The couple adopted their daughter Naleigh from South Korea in 2009 when she was nine months old. Heigl’s decision was perhaps inspired by her own adopted sister Mel, who was also born in South Korea.
But Heigl and Kelley weren’t done yet. In 2012, they expanded their family when they adopted another daughter, Adalaide, from birth in the U.S. Then, the family got even bigger when Heigl gave birth to a son, Joshua Jr., in 2017.
Now, Naleigh, 12, Adalaide, 8, and Joshua, 4, are growing up and Heigl loves to share photos of the happy family on Instagram.
Josh Kelley, proud father and hubby
In their relationship, Katherine Heigl and Josh Kelley know it’s all about finding a balance between time with each other and time with the children. Kelley is never afraid to step up and be a supportive father, and Heigl loves to praise him for it on Instagram.
Back in January 2017, Heigl pointed out that Kelley ended his birthday by cuddling with the kids. “How @joshbkelley is finishing off his birthday, with sleepy snuggles from his namesake,” she shared, along with an adorable photo.
She continued: “Could not be more grateful for this extraordinary man and for this extraordinary day that he was born! Happy Birthday to the sexiest, funniest, smartest, most talented, charming man I have ever met! Oh and he’s not too shabby in the Dad department either … is there ANYTHING the man can not do??!!!”
From where we’re standing, the answer to that question is definitely “no.”
Her kids, their story
It may seem easy being born into a celebrity family. But Heigl understands all too well that her own fame and success could threaten to overshadow her children’s lives.
To this end, Heigl tries to empower the children to take control of their own stories, and she isn’t afraid to share important info with them. As she said in an interview with People, she had this response for Naleigh and Adelaide when they had questions about their background. “This is your story. We don’t have any information about your biological fathers, but we do have a bit about your biological mothers.”
Ultimately, Heigl seems to be creating a safe space for her kids where they can learn more about themselves at their own pace. “If you guys want to talk more about them, you can have as much or as little information as you want,” she told the children. “Tell us what you’re comfortable with knowing.”
With three children, you might think that there is often friction among siblings. But it looks like all of the kids get along just fine!
That’s certainly the vibe we get from this photo. In April 2017, Heigl shared a photo on Instagram of her and the kids all snuggling together on the bed. “My morning snuggle buddies,” she wrote. “My favorite way to start the day is with these three! #morningbliss #savoreverymoment #thoseheavenlydays.”
This photo helps to showcase just how close Heigl’s family really is.
Mommy turned activist
Sadly, life isn’t all about cute photos and early morning cuddle sessions. But in May 2020, Heigl shared a series of photos on Instagram that revealed how much she worries about the future for her children.
That day, she shared some very deep thoughts following the death of George Floyd. She wrote, “I can’t sleep. And when I do, I wake with a single thought in my head. How will I tell Adalaide? How will I explain the unexplainable? How can I protect her? How can I break a piece of her beautiful divine spirit to do so?”
She continued: “I can’t sleep. I lay in my bed in the dark and weep for every mother of a beautiful divine black child who has to extinguish a piece of their beloved baby’s spirit to try to keep them alive in a country that has too many sleeping soundly.”
Obviously, there are no easy answers to the questions Heigl is asking. All she and Kelley can do is offer Adalaide and their other children unconditional love and support.
Obviously, many parents could learn a thing or two from Heigl and Kelley. And it looks like they are ready to share some of their parental wisdom with the world!
Their entire family appears on the March 2021 cover of Parents magazine. As the cover promises, they offer important lessons to readers about “togetherness” and taking the time to “enjoy the little moments.”
Readers of that magazine will soon realize what we’ve already figured out. When it comes to children and parenthood, Katherine Heigl is absolutely full of surprises!