Katherine Heigl has a full house—er, ranch! The Ugly Truth star chatted with Us Weekly Tuesday, May 6, at an ASPCA private party in Beverly Hills, about life at home with singer husband Josh Kelley, their two daughters, Naleigh, 5, and Adalaide, 2, and their many, many pets!
"I have 7 dogs," the star told Us laughing. "Yeah! I do! Almost 8 maybe… if I can talk my husband into it, and 3 cats." How does Heigl house all the animals? "They live in the house in Utah," she dished, "then we have a separate ranch where we have 9 horses and 2 donkeys and 2 goats and chickens and mini horses."
That doesn't stop her from thriving in her marriage. "I think that we just really enjoy each other," Heigl said. "He's kind of my best friend," she continued, though adding: "I think that can be tricky. When it starts to become too much of a friendship and not enough of a romance, that can also be a problem." The stars, married since December 2007, try to "shake it up" occasionally with romantic gestures and evenings together, but they're mostly good spending alone time in the comfort of their home.
"When you live with someone—and we've been married for 6 years and together for 8 years—you just become so used to each other's company," Heigl explained. "That can be awesome. Like, in our instance, it's amazing. We like to watch Game of Thrones, have a couple cocktails, hang out together." The Grey's Anatomy alum went on to dish one of her marriage secrets with Us! "I laugh at all his jokes," she confessed. "I think he's really funny, so then he really loves me, because I laugh at all of his jokes."
In all seriousness, the actress explained that the biggest component of their relationship is communication. "That doesn't mean there was a lack of communication," she said, referring to her own marital issues. "It was just a lack of hearing, and it was assuming what the other person meant and needed or wanted," she said of hitting a rough patch with Kelley.
Her example? "I am a laundry person, I love laundry, doing laundry, I also make my own laundry detergent. So I decided one day, I'm going to do all of his laundry before he goes on tour, and fold it beautifully and put it all in his travel case for him." His reaction, Heigl recalled, was disappointing. "I remember thinking, 'I should just ask him what would make him really happy." The star added, "Just recognize what your partner really needs from you, ask them and if you can do that, do that."
Along with staying on top of communication, the two parents have also been busy watching their baby girls grow up! "They're really, really great," Heigl told Us of her kids. "My 5-year-old [Naleigh], I mean… everyone says it, but she's so obsessed with Frozen. So that's what we do every night after dinner and bath. She sings to every song."
Adalaide, on the other hand, "just turned two in April," Heigl shared, "and she's kind of—every week—a different human being. It's a bit overwhelming: One minute she's this sweet, cuddly lovable thing, and the next minute she's independent and stubborn, kind of like a wild animal!"
"I'm just trying to figure it out from one minute to the next, what I'm going to be dealing with," she confessed.
While Heigl and Kelley have been busy with their kids, both parents are respectively gearing up for more work ahead. The singer just recently released a new single and Heigl is anticipating her return to television 4 years after her Grey's Anatomy exit! The star, who just finished wrapping several indie films, told Us she will start shooting episodes of her upcoming NBC political drama, State of Affairs, in L.A. this summer.
"I’m really excited," Heigl said of the series. "This is a passion project for me. I've been developing and working on it for two years. I remember standing on set the first day of filming and we were waiting to shoot the first scene and I thought, 'My God we're actually here.' I'm really proud of it and really excited about it, so I can’t wait to see where it goes next."