Exclusive: Jennifer Garner on Life’s Messy Adventures

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You’ve seen posters and billboards for Jennifer Garner’s new Disney Film, The Odd Life of Timothy Green, but you’re not quite sure what it’s about, right?  The story follows a couple who deeply desires a child, but have found themselves unable to conceive. One rainy night, they take a notepad and write out all of the qualities they imagined their child would have, and bury them in a box. Much to the couple’s surprise, they soon find out that a real life boy has grown form their box of dreams.

This July, Garner teamed up with Frigidaire and Save the Children to host the “Adventures in Clean” event at Griffith Park in Los Angeles. At the event, children were encouraged to run around, play in the dirt, and really grind in those grass stains, all in the name of fun. Then, the kids’ clothes were washed in Frigidaire’s new Affinity line of washers and dryers, showing that Frigidaire can handle the spots and stains of childhood. In conjunction with her new movie, Frigidaire will donate $1 to Save the Children for every photo uploaded to their Facebook page of a messy kid.

[Read more: Jennifer Garner Shares Her Family's Holiday Traditions]

Jennifer might be a movie star, but her real full-time job is acting as Mom to the three children she has with husband Ben Affleck. The couple has two daughters, named Violet and Seraphina Rose, and a son named Samuel, who was welcomed to the family only five months ago.

We had the chance to chat with Garner about how she drew on her experiences as a real life mom to help her portray Cindy Green.

“Oh, mostly, I feel like it was off screen,” she said. “When you’re working with a child, even though the whole crew is there to support the child and take care of them, it’s still a work place; it’s busy and bustling.  Joel [Edgerton, who plays her husband Jim Green] and I were constantly making sure that he didn’t need to pee and then he had a snack and he had water when he needed it… You can just look at a kid and know that he needs something.”

This isn’t her first role as an aspiring mom.  In Juno, she broke our hearts as the overly enthusiastic adoptive mom to Ellen Page’s character’s unborn child.  We asked how she felt about starring in another film that touches on the emotional side of parenting.  

“I love this movie with my whole heart!  The writing for this film is so true.  It’s so special to me because I took a couple of my mom girlfriends to the very first screening when it was super rough.  It was the first time an audience was seeing it at all, and Peter [Hedges] let me bring my friends.  They cried from the moment it started until the end, not because it was sad but because they recognized themselves in it.  I love when a movie does that to you.”

Jennifer was named People’s Most Beautiful Woman of the year, back in April.  We were curious to get her thoughts on that, but her response was, “Oh really?” She had no idea!

We love that the busy mom of three is so grounded…. but we were still dying to know how she stays so gorgeous.  What is a typical beauty regimen for Jennifer?  SUNSCREEN and lots of it.

“I’ve fully embraced sunscreen everyday, all over.  I have it everywhere, and I think that’s the best thing you can do for yourself.”

As for make up tips that any mom could pick up on?  She says she always makes sure to keep her face clean and moisturized (along with her sunscreen, of course).

“I think if you take care of your skin, the rest is so much easier.   And then when you get older, you need a little retinol or this or that… I don’t even know.  But other than that I tend to keep it really simple with a little concealer, a little blush, a little lips, some bronzer…”

Her kids are always dressed to the (age appropriate) nines, but it’s Jennifer’s chic and practical style that motivates us.  She’s fashion conscious and ready for anything, all at the same time.  When we tried to get her secret wardrobe staple, she said:

“My wardrobe must-have would be jeans because that’s what I wear 97% of the time.  How can you chase a child in something if the wind can blow it up or if you can’t bend over in it or if the shoes don’t make sense?”

In her new movie, Cindy and Jim make a list of things that would make up their child. Following that theme, we were curious as to whether she had any lists that would impact her life.

”Oh, my bucket list?  There is a lot I need to do.  I feel like I haven’t traveled in so long.  I feel like I need to go somewhere.  But I also want to go hiking with my family to the bottom of the Grand Canyon.”

But does that mean she loves camping? 

“I have learned to like camping through my kids because they like doing it, but no it’s not something I enjoy doing.”

The Odd Life of Timothy Green is in theaters on August 15, and we can’t wait to see Jennifer in it!

Check out the trailer below:

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