“Well God has a plan for everything,” Parton told Lauer. “But I said that I think probably it was his plan for me not to have kids so everybody’s kids could be mine, and they are now!”
Lauer also asked Parton about how she got her gift for working with kids. According to Parton, it comes from growing up in a large family.
“Well I grew up in a whole big bunch of kids, eight kids younger than me and I just love kids,” she replied, referencing her upbringing as the oldest of nine children in her family. “I have that high-pitched voice I’m over-exaggerated, I look like Mother Goose or you know one of those over-exaggerated cartoon characters and kids just kinda relate to that.”
When asked about her childlike nature, Parton naturally had a clever response. “I do think I’m child-like but that’s different than childish! In fact somebody said, ‘Why’d you wait so long to put this album out?’ and I said, ‘I want to wait until I was in my second childhood so I’m pretty much there now!'”
Parton’s new children’s album, I Believe in You, came out on Oct. 13, and contains 13 songs and an additional spoken track where Dolly narrates her story, Coat of Many Colors.
Parton’s Imagination Library is an organization that encourages literacy by sending one free book a month to a child from birth to age five.