Busy Philipps' and Michelle Williams' Daughters Consider Themselves 'Cousins': They're 'Like Family'

Busy Philipps also reveals her family's holiday plans

Busy Philipps, Michelle Williams
Photo: Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP

Busy Philipps and Michelle Williams‘ friendship has spanned 15 years, since the twosome started working together on the hit teen drama Dawson’s Creek in the early 2000s. And now, that bond seems to have extended to their children.

Philipps, who is currently partnering with Campbell’s new ready-to-serve, nutritious Well Yes! soups to promote the #WellYesMoment campaign, tells PEOPLE that her oldest daughter and Williams’ daughter “get along” well.

“They consider each other sort of like, cousins, in a way,” says Philipps of Birdie Leigh, 8, and Matilda Rose, 11. “I feel like that’s the best representation of their relationship. They basically feel related. I mean, Michelle’s like family to me.”

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The 37-year-old and Williams, 36, have been by each other’s sides throughout the start of awards season, as the latter is recognized for her turn in the critical-darling drama Manchester by the Sea.

On Sunday, Williams shared of her longtime pal, “She’s proof that the love of your life does not have to be a man! That’s the love of my life right there.”

“Anytime anyone publicly declares their love for you, I mean, I feel like that’s kind of amazing,” Philipps tells PEOPLE in response. “I’m publicly declaring my love for her back.”

“We live on different coasts, and unfortunately for us, we don’t get to see each other in person all that much. But we really make an effort to reach out and to talk and to come to each other when we need support and we need someone,” adds the Freaks and Geeks alum. “And we’ve really been there for each other through a lot of different places in our lives, and we’re that much closer for it.”

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Philipps, who was in New York City on Tuesday for Well Yes!, has since returned to Los Angeles, where she’ll celebrate the holidays with husband Marc Silverstein and their girls.

“I am really excited to celebrate at home,” she says. “The girls and I will do cookies at the end of this week so we have our cookies ready for Santa. We normally do Italian food on Christmas Eve – that’s just something my family has always done historically … It will be nice. We’re just going to be very low-key this year.”

And Birdie and her younger sister Cricket Pearl, 3, are ready for Santa’s visit – and have been prepping by taking in their mom’s exquisite Elf on the Shelf displays.

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“To me, it’s less about ‘The elves are watching you to see you misbehave,’ and it’s more about a live-action advent calendar,” the Vice Principals star says. “So I’ll set up something fun and cool for the kids to find in the morning.”

So what’s on the girls’ Christmas wish lists this year?

“Cricket loves dolls,” the holiday-loving actress shares. “Which is so funny because I loved dolls when I was little … She wakes up in the morning, she’s ready to play with her dolls. She wants her dolls 100 percent of the time.”

Philipps says her daughter will perform talent shows with her Barbies and princess dolls. “It’s like nonstop imaginary play with dolls for Cricket. And hearing her, she makes up these songs to sing at her talent shows. It’s amazing.”

Birdie, on the other hand, is fascinated by the culinary arts.

“She loves all cooking shows, Great American Baking Show,” Philipps reveals. “She loves Chopped – that’s why we did the Chopped elves – she loves any cooking or baking show on Food Network. She loves it. And then she actually likes the act of doing it herself. Trying to make recipes and cooking stuff.”

As the girls get older, Philipps says she sees herself and her husband in their personalities more and more.

She notes, though, “And then I see very unique, individual personalities that I don’t know where they came from. They’re just their own humans and it’s very special to watch that too.”

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