April 12, 2013 01:00 PM

Peggy Sirota

He may play a superhero in the movies, but when it comes to his daughter, Chris Hemsworth can be a real softie.

The Thor star recently heard India Rose say “Papa” for the first time and, “He was almost crying. He was [screaming for joy],” Hemsworth’s wife Elsa Pataky tells PEOPLE.

Pataky, 36, and Hemsworth, 29, welcomed their baby girl in May, and while she had been saying “Mama” for some time, Hemsworth was itching to hear his daughter address him as well.

“She’d been trying and I would see Chris saying ‘Papa’ to her all the time. We say it in Spanish because I speak Spanish to her,” says Pataky, who is featured as Beauty of the Week in PEOPLE’s April 15 issue.
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With India celebrating her first birthday May 11, the proud parents are planning her major milestone just as they do most other events in their life — very minimally.

“We hate to plan things, actually, so no plans yet. It will not be a big thing, just for us,” says Pataky. “We don’t even know where we are going to be.”

As for balancing busy Hollywood schedules with family life, Pataky says she and Hemsworth put togetherness at the top of their priorities.

“You have to make an effort and try to stay together as much as you can,” says the Fast and Furious 6 actress. “If we start splitting and doing other things it’s not going to last.”

To strengthen the family ties, Hemsworth and Pataky agreed not to take a job while the other is working.

“It’s difficult because you have to give up some things because you want to keep the family together,” she explains. “We try and keep it as normal as much as we can — like a typical family.”

— Patrick Gomez

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