5 minutes with Hilary Duff

Yesterday I got to live out my teenage dreamI met actress and singer Hilary Duff. I refrained from singing any of her songs to her, but it was a challenge not to. Hilary was in Toronto for the Duracell “Powering Holiday Smiles” event at The Hospital for Sick Children. The Duracell initiative gives new toys to sick children and batteries to power the toys in hospital playrooms. Hilary was on hand to hand out the Hasbro toys to all the children and to officially give Duracell’s donation of 20,000 batteries to hospitals across Canada that are a part of the Children’s Miracle Network.

After meeting all the children, Hilary sat down for a quick interview about the event and of course to chat about her new album—lucky for us she told us when we can expect her new single. Since Hilary is one of our favourite celebrity moms, I couldn’t resist asking about her adorable son Luca, who turns two in March. Plus she shared what Canadian attributes attracted her to her husband, retired hockey player, Mike Comrie.

How did you get involved with this campaign? 

Duracell contacted me and told me about the campaign and I got excited. I think that them working with Children’s Miracle Network and all the amazing work that they do, is so inspiring. I’m a big fan of them. The campaign is so unique, I never really thought about the toys not working at the hospital because they’re old or because they don’t have new batteries. That’s the last thing a kid wants to deal with, especially someone who has to spend time in a hospital. Anytime or during the holidays

How did it feel when you got to give all the kids their new toys?

I think that’s the real gift of the day is getting to meet the kids. And getting to hand them a toy and give them a hug. All of them were just beautiful and incredibly strong and brave. And some of them really leave a mark with you. I love getting to have those experiences. It also puts so much in perspective for me, that we think we have hard days, but we don’t have hard days until you’re in the hospital like this and you have a sick child.

You’re working on your new album, how’s it going?

It’s going really good. It’s been a few months and I’ve done about seven songs, so it feels good. I’ve done enough where I’ve figured out the direction and what I want it to sound like and what I want the content to be about. I’m still writing and in the studio a lot. But I think by Spring I should have a single. It feels good.

You’re a mom, so along with batteries to power toys, what are your other must-haves?

Right now we’re super into toys. He just likes handheld little figures and it’s really important that he has one in each hand wherever he goes. He’s a two toy kind of kid. So like trains and little matchstick cars and little characters.

He still having a bottle, which I can’t really break him of until he’s two. I want him to have milk until he’s two. So we carry a bottle always.

I bring placemats everywhere, even though he’s a pretty clean eater. Have you seen those ZoLi placemats, they’re rubber? I’m obsessed with them. So I bring them everywhere, if we’re going out to eat. So then I don’t leave a huge mess behind in the restaurant.

We have a sippy cup. I don’t have too many other must-haves. Diapers obviously. He’s not super high maintenance.

This campaign is about bringing smiles to children, so what makes Luca smile?

He’s obsessed with peek-a-boo. We go to music class and he really likes singing. I think he likes hockey more. And he likes to scare people. And he does this thing where he fakes runs and bangs his head into a wall. And then he’ll go “OwwwOwwwOwww” and spin in circles. I think it’s the cutest thing ever. He’s a little bit of a prankster.

Also I think pretty girls make him smile. He’s a bit of a flirt.

You’re husband is Canadian, do you feel like Luca has a connection to Canada?

We come a lot, we go to Edmonton all the time because that’s where his brother and sister are. So we’re here often and for some reason, I don’t know if it’s some weird family connection thing, but I feel likes he’s at home when we’re there with his cousins. He just kind of fits right in. When other times we have play dates, when we have a lot of other kids that are just friends, he’s more attached to me. So it’s nice to feel that.

He seems to really like the hockey stick, which scares me. Then he thinks he’s putting the puck in and then holds his stick up and says “goal.” It’s so funny. But really he didn’t make a goal at all.

And last question. Since you married a Canadian guy, what makes Canadian guys great?

I think they’re solid guys all around, they’re really nice. I remember when I met my husband, I mean obviously I was really attracted to him, but I was just like “you’re the nicest person I’ve ever met.” I feel like he was really down to earth and could have a conversation with anybody and that was really attractive to me. He was really laid back. And my life I think can be slightly intimidating. When he met me we were at a lake and all of a sudden I was kicking off a world tour in Canada. And he came with me. He could just talk to my bus driver or the head of my label, all the same. I was really attracted to that quality.

But you know they like to throw back a few beers and have a good time. And I like that.

You can help with the Duracell “Powering Holiday Smiles” campaign by buying Duracell Quantam AA-16 batteries from now until December 27. Every purchase results in a $1 donation to Children’s Miracle Network. Learn more about the campaign here.

Photo courtesy of Duracell