Katherine Heigl told reporters at the 13th Annual ASPCA Bergh Ball in New York last night that she is learning a lot about herself and motherhood. She explains, "I'm a lot more strict than I thought I would be. I really feel like discipline and manners, a good schedule, a good night sleep and a good nap are really important. I didn't think I would be quite so like that."

She also revealed that watching a movie or TV show involving a mother-daughter relationship has been a very emotional experience for her. "It is so gut wrenching in a way that I could have never predicted," she says. "You have this empathy suddenly - this compassion for a mother going through anything complicated or difficult with a child. It's something that I understand now - that unbelievable drive and instinct to protect."

Katherine Heigl and Josh Kelley's daughter Nancy Leigh (Naleigh)

"I really could not have imagined a better father for [Naleigh]", Katherine said of her musician hubby Josh Kelley. "She's the luckiest little kid. We call him 'Disneyland Dad' because as soon as he comes in it's just fun and happiness and she rides around the room on his shoulders."

Singing Josh's praises, Katherine also added, "He's fantastic with diapers, food, naptime, playtime – he's got it all."

Mom, Nancy, agrees, telling People, "Both her and Josh are wonderful, wonderful parents, they just adore her." As for her granddaughter, "Naleigh has a real strong personality," she says. "She's really a wonderful little girl. We all squeeze her and kiss her on the cheek. She's very round and very adorable. She's almost edible!"

Sixteen-month-old Naleigh, has recently started to walk and talk on her own. Katherine explained that her first word was 'hi', adding "and then she would go, 'Oh yeah!' all the time. She would be playing with her toys and go, 'Oh yeah!' in that inflection. It's genius!"