Emily Strohm
May 31, 2017 10:30 AM


Only a few days have passed since Kelly Ripa named Ryan Seacrest as her new Live co-host, but the two of them have long been thick as thieves.

“He knows my whole family,” Ripa tells PEOPLE exclusively in this week’s issue. In fact, Seacrest is so familiar to Ripa, her husband Mark Consuelos and their three children Lola, Joaquin and Michael
 that she says her kids “non-reactive” to the former American Idol host.

“It’s like, ‘Oh, Ryan Seacrest is in the house,’ ” says Ripa. “Like that’s a perfectly normal thing to happen.”

Jake Chessum

As for Seacrest’s family, Ripa was smitten with them right away.

“His mom has also done a cooking segment on the show,” she says. “I fell in love with her. She’ll make a great mother-in-law.”

  • For more on Kelly and Ryan, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands now

Ripa, 46, took her time selecting her new co-host after Michael Strahan‘s abrupt departure last May. One year and 67 potential men and women later, Ripa couldn’t be happier to share the stage with Seacrest, 42.

“He’s been a favorite for so long,” she says.

Live with Kelly and Ryan airs weekdays (check local listings).

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