Actress and mom Jennifer Garner is appearing on the cover of PEOPLE Magazine for the Beautiful Issue. In an interview inside she shares what it’s like balancing her day job as an actress and her biggest career role as a mom.

Here are a few of the best Jennifer Garner quotes on motherhood from the past few years starting with one from her recent interview.

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On How Her Kids See Her

After a photo shoot Garner explains, “I’ll feel like the best possible version of myself. They’ll look at me and say, ‘Can you wash your face? Can you put your hair in a ponytail and put your glasses and sweats on? And I see the compliment in that. They just want me to look like Mom.”

On Emotional Intelligence (for Kids and Moms)

“Our kids need to be allowed to have a bad day. And you need to show them that it’s OK to have the whole range of emotions. You should have it all: rage and anger and sadness, so there is a lot of room for joy and happiness as well.”

On Parenting In the Digital Age

“My kids don’t have any social media yet. And I am terrified. I think it puts so much pressure on kids at an age when they’re really vulnerable anyway. You know, if anyone has any clues, let me know.”

On Her Mom Friends

“I have a couple of celebrity mom friends that I go to for certain things that only they can — only we can talk about! But mostly I talk to my friends, my mom friends from Violet’s school. And we just gab away like anyone. But pretty much I hang up from one mom friend and call another.”

On The Importance of Her Best Role

At her Hollywood Walk of Fame ceremony she said, “For my children, when you walk over this star I want you to remember first of all that I love you. And that this is about hard work and good luck and not a whole lot else. You define me, not this wonderful spot on the pavement.”

 

On Dealing With Tantrums

“You treat them like real kids. They have boundaries and they have rules and they throw fits. My littlest one saw something he wanted. I had just said, ‘We’re not buying anything,’ and he threw a fit. The people at the store said to me, ‘Please let us just give this to you’ because he was so unhappy. And I said, ‘I’m sorry that he’s throwing a fit in your store and you’re so sweet to want to give this to him. And thank you for asking me first. But he’s going to have to throw a fit.’ I said no. No is no. I said to my girls, ’What do I mean when I say no?’ And they were like, ‘She really means no!’ So you just have to do it. It’s not pretty. I don’t think that I’m always the best at it, but I try my best to be consistent and for them to know what they can expect from me.”

On Co-Parenting

“It’s not Ben’s job to make me happy. The main thing is these kids ― and we’re completely in line with what we hope for them. Sure, I lost the dream of dancing with my husband at my daughter’s wedding. But you should see their faces when he walks through the door. And if you see your kids love someone so purely and wholly, then you’re going to be friends with that person.”

On Raising Kids With Values

“I think teaching your kids anything is a lifelong job and certainly values are something ― you can’t just say, ‘Here, have values!’ You have to show them that you have values. The most important thing is just modeling at this age. When they’re older, they’ll hopefully travel with us and go to places and be boots on the ground, but for right now, it’s just really important to both of us that they see and appreciate the work we do.”

On the, Ahem, “Challenging” Parts of Motherhood

“Imagine squeezing something out the size of a watermelon. How much pain is that? There’ll be a lot of swelling.”

On the Little Things

“There are lots of little traditions the kids and I have together. Right now our blueberry bushes are going nuts, so we sneak down and pick blueberries together on the weekends. But my most valuable time with the kids is bedtime— I have different books going with each of my kids and they each get their own time [with me], even if it has to be condensed!”

—Shahrzad Warkentin

Featured photo: Karon Liu via Flickr

 

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