Where is Kelly Ripa and why is she not on LIVE?

The Hope and Faith star hosts with Ryan Seacrest

Kelly Ripa left fans surprised at the top of the week when they tuned in for Live with Kelly and Ryan and didn't see her there.

MORE: Kelly Ripa makes surprising revelation about family life as she celebrates special occasion

The TV personality was missing from her usual spot on the ABC morning talk show as co-host Ryan Seacrest was joined by Ali Wentworth instead.

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WATCH: Kelly Ripa's children steal the show on Live with Kelly and Ryan

While no reason was provided for Kelly's absence on the show, a source told HELLO!: "Kelly is taking a few weeks off for a much-deserved vacation. Their family plans quality time together in the month of March every year."

Kelly and husband Mark Consuelos are parents to three kids, Michael, Lola, and Joaquin, and share a close bond with all their kids, especially as they've been left empty nesters following their departure from the family home for school or work.

MORE: Kelly Ripa's husband and sons look so alike in never-before-seen celebratory family photos

The LIVE! star also recently marked a family milestone when she celebrated her youngest son Joaquin's 19th birthday with a social media post featuring a collage of pictures throughout the years.

Ali Wentworth filled in for Kelly on LIVE!

The show's official Instagram page posted a clip of Ryan and Ali being introduced at the top of the installment to rapturous applause from the audience and crew.

The comedian and actress has become a firm fan favorite on the show, having made several guest appearances and hosted in the past as well.

MORE: Kelly Ripa looks incredible as she shimmies in stylish workout gear - watch

MORE: David Muir and Kelly Ripa are friendship goals in candid backstage photo

Ali last appeared on the Valentine's Day episode of the show with her husband George Stephanopoulos, talking about their long-lasting marriage and relationship with their daughters, Elliott and Harper.

They told Kelly and Ryan about their whirlwind romance, comprising of a blind date, followed by an engagement two months later, and then a wedding six months after that.

The couple played the Newlywed Game, although they didn't win

George and Ali also played the Newlywed Game on the show, which they did lose. But Ali shared an adorable snapshot of the couple from the studio that showed they were just as much in love regardless.

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