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Hoda Kotb Surprises Mom from Iowa Whose Holiday Food Plan for Her Kids Went Viral

https://www.instagram.com/p/CmZOXdfumhn/?igshid=YWJhMjlhZTc%3D todayshow Verified *gasp* THIS IS HODA! 🫢 Follow @todayshow for more #MorningBoost moments. Janet El Khatib takes holiday planning to the next level and she’s gone viral after her son posted her extremely detailed holiday to-do list online. Swipe to see her itinerary and head to the link in our bio to watch Janet’s full surprise with Hoda.; TODAY -- Pictured: Hoda Kotb on Tuesday, November 15, 2022 -- (Photo by: Nathan Congleton/NBC)

https://www.instagram.com/p/CmZOXdfumhn/?igshid=YWJhMjlhZTc%3D todayshow Verified *gasp* THIS IS HODA! 🫢 Follow @todayshow for more #MorningBoost moments. Janet El Khatib takes holiday planning to the next level and she’s gone viral after her son posted her extremely detailed holiday to-do list online. Swipe to see her itinerary and head to the link in our bio to watch Janet’s full surprise with Hoda.; TODAY -- Pictured: Hoda Kotb on Tuesday, November 15, 2022 -- (Photo by: Nathan Congleton/NBC)

Photo: NBC; Nathan Congleton/NBC

Christmas came early for one lucky mom in Iowa this year.

In an interview clip posted by the Today show on Tuesday, Janet El Khatib brought smiles to viewers’ faces with her sweet reaction after getting the surprise of a lifetime from the NBC show’s co-host Hoda Kotb while on air.

El Khatib’s holiday plan for her grown kids is a lesson in leisure and pleasure. She’s got suggestions for activities and delicious meal plans prepped for the week that everyone visits their Dubuque, Iowa, home. Her email went viral after her son Khalid El Khatib tweeted his mom’s itinerary.

My mom’s annual ‘home for the holidays’ email to me and my siblings just dropped,” he wrote in a tweet shared last week. “An incredibly thorough, detail-rich look ahead at how it’s possible for me to gain 15 lbs in one week.”

The email included meticulous plans from their arrivals featuring snacks such as “puffed popcorn, Chex mix, and various candies” to activities from visiting restaurants and breweries to a Bourbon tasting as well as manicures. The tweet has since garnered over 100K likes and counting.

While preparing for a virtual chat with who Janet thought was her local NBC affiliate news station KWWL-TV to discuss her viral holiday plan, Kotb, 58, explained to the audience in the clip, “She has no idea the whole country is watching.”

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“Hey Janet can you hear me?” asked Kotb, to which Janet replied, “Yes, I can.”

Okay Janet we have a surprise for you this is not KWWL-TV,” Kotb continued before Janet quickly recognized the voice and gasped, saying, “This is Hoda!”

The heartwarming reaction sent Kotb and her other co-hosts into laughter. “Wait, I’m gonna have a heart attack,” Janet said while trying to process the situation.

Janet later told Kotb of her decision to create such detailed holiday plans, “I do it every time my kids come home because I want when they come home for it to be special, they all have varying likes and dislikes so I send out this itinerary, and then they can always tweak it.”

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Still in shock, Janet said, “I can’t believe I am talking to Hoda!”

“You guys, I watch you every day. I TiVo you every day because I walk, too,” she added.

Discussing how his tweets about his mom’s email became viral, Khalid told Kotb, “I actually posted those tweets before boarding a flight to California. There was no WiFi on the flight, and I landed to 30,000 notifications. That exceeded my expectations and sort of snowballed from there and continues.”

When asked why he think his tweets “resonated” with a lot of people, he replied with a heartfelt response: “I think there are sort of two reasons; either you have a mom like my mom or you want a mom like my mom.”