Nicole Murphy and Michael Strahan Feb. 9
02/19/2008 at 11:20 AM EST
After divorcing actor-comedian Eddie Murphy, the father of her five children, ex-model Nicole Murphy vowed she would never marry again. But that was two years ago and before she fell in love with New York Giants Super Bowl champ Michael Strahan.
"When I got divorced, I said never again," Nicole Murphy told PEOPLE at a Feb. 16 south Florida fundraiser for the John T. Petters Foundation, a charity that provides scholarships for students to travel abroad. "But some time has passed since Eddie and I split, and I know now what I want in a man: communication and shared interests. Michael and talk about everything, and we both love to travel, explore and laugh."
Murphy was married for about two decades, and while she admits they disagreed on many issues, she still considers her ex-husband to be a good man.
"Eddie is a wonderful person and a good father," she continues. "But we obviously had problems in the marriage. I tell my friends that opposites may attract but that kind of early excitement doesn't last. Find someone who shares your passions and interests."
After dating for nearly 10 months, Murphy and Strahan, who were all over each other at the three-day event – and slept so late on Saturday that they missed an afternoon polo match in Wellington – definitely have shared passions.
"We are going to Africa next month," she says. "We love to see new things and always have a great time together."