Younger actress Sutton Foster chats with PEOPLE about life with 2-year-old Emily ahead of her Lactaid brand partnership

By Hanna Flanagan
May 22, 2019 09:00 AM

Sutton Foster is more than a triple threat — she’s not only a two-time Tony Award-winning actress, singer and dancer who stars in TV Land’s Younger, she’s also the proud mom of daughter Emily Dale.

“Life with her is just pretty amazing,” Foster tells PEOPLE exclusively of her little girl. “Two is a fun age. She’s just an incredible little human being.”

The star has a lot on her plate. But, thanks to help from family, friends and coworkers, she makes it work, often bringing Emily to various sets — including the set of the commercial for her new brand partnership with Lactaid (which is 100 percent real milk, just without the lactose).

“I feel so lucky that Lactaid welcomed Emily,” says Foster, 44. “I was able to bring my daughter to the commercial and share these experiences with her. That has just been so special.”

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Foster stars in the commercial alongside Cookie Monster, the ultimate milk lover, which earned her some serious cool points in her daughter’s book. Emily even got to fist-bump the iconic Sesame Street character.

“She got to meet Cookie Monster and I think it blew her mind,” Foster tells PEOPLE. “She didn’t say anything. She just smiled and stared.”

The Broadway star says she gets to bring her daughter to the set of Younger (the sixth season premieres on June 12), as well. Emily gets to hang with the cast and crew, and Foster says she’s become somewhat of a celebrity herself.

“She comes to work and the whole hair and makeup team gives her a touch-up,” Foster tells PEOPLE. “She knows Mommy’s set bag. She pulls out my lipstick. The cameramen bring her oranges and she gets snacks.”

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Aside from her accommodating costars (including Hilary Duff, whom Foster recently thanked for her support in an Instagram post) the actress credits her husband, Ted Griffin, with helping her balance life as a working mom.

Foster says she’s thankful to be doing what she loves, and show her daughter what it means to be a “strong, independent woman” in the process.

She tells PEOPLE, “I want Emily to be able to find something that she’s passionate about and loves doing.”

Sutton Foster and daughter Emily
Sutton Foster/Instagram

Foster and Griffin adopted Emily in 2017 after years of fertility struggles. The couple, who married in 2014, opened up to PEOPLE about bringing their baby home.

“This is a whole new chapter in our lives,” she said at the time, “It’s been full, and amazing and exhausting and wonderful … I realize Emily was so clearly meant to be our daughter.”

Now, two years after the adoption, Foster reflects on the complicated process. Her advice to others interested in adoption? Trust and let go.

“Our journey was amazing. We had all of these bumps in the road with fertility. But as soon as we started pursuing adoption, it felt very meant to be,” she tells PEOPLE. “You have to go in with a very open heart. There’s a lot of powerlessness but you have to let go. It has to be about the birth mom and it has to be about the child.”