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Jennie Garth on motherhood, career and balancing it all
Actress Jennie Garth captured television fans' attention in the 1990s when she played Kelly Taylor on the Fox hit show, "Beverly Hills, 90210." Decades later, Jennie is a mother of three daughters, Luca, 16, Lola, 10 and Fiona, 7, and is an advocate for the Eye Saw Good campaign.
I recently caught up with her and discussed her kids, her career, how she balances it all -- and what's up next for her (hint: a TV project with an old co-star). Take a look at what she had to say:
Q. What inspired you to get involved with the Eye Saw Good campaign?
A. "As a mom, I’ve seen just how important good vision is to my daughters’ growth and development, academically and socially. I know first hand how vision can affect children as they grow and learn. My oldest daughter, Luca, got glasses at age 12. We noticed that she was having issues seeing the board in school and thankfully we were able to diagnose the issue quickly and get it resolved. Now that she’s a teenager she wears contact lenses and we see on a daily basis how important it is to use the right products and take good care of her eyes and her lenses.
When I joined the Eye Saw Good program, I learned that one in four children has a vision problem and two thirds of those children are not receiving care. That was unbelievable to me — this is something that is so simple to correct in most cases, and can help these children avoid a lifetime of vision issues."
Q. You have three daughters. How do you inspire them to be strong and confident?
A. "I think a big lesson I try to teach them is that helping others is helping yourself too; it makes you a better person — a stronger more confident person. So by getting involved in initiatives like Eye Saw Good, which supports an amazing charity program, Kids Vision for Life, I hope I’m inspiring them to make a difference, think big, and be role models."
Q. Do you think working on a show such as "Beverly Hills, 90210" for so many years helped shape the mother you are today? Do you think some of the issues you dealt with on the show will help you be a better parent to them as they grow up?
A. "Oh, absolutely! My experience on the show definitely helped shape the mother I am today. I try to confront difficult conversations head on with my girls about healthy body image and relationships, not only with boys but also with friends. As they grow up, I’ll definitely continue to tap into my "90210" experiences."
Q. How do you balance your work and family life?
A. "My priority are my girls, No. 1. I choose projects that I’m really passionate about, which is why I’m so excited to be working with Alcon and Kids Vision for Life on Eye Saw Good. I do let them in on the fun when I can — we had a blast exploring Manhattan recently!"
Q. What do you enjoy doing in your downtime with your family?
A. "We love staying active — swimming, biking, horseback riding when we can. Luca just started driving recently, so we’ve been cruising around a lot lately. We just visited my sister in Illinois, too. I think it’s important to take the girls back to the Midwest where I had so much fun growing up."
Q. What's up next for you?
A. I’m going to be sharing all the good things I see and encouraging others to do the same! By sharing a photo of something good on Twitter with the #EyeSawGood hashtag, we can all help “make good happen.” For every photo that’s shared, Alcon will donate $1, up to $50,000, which will fund more than 1,000 eye exams and eye glasses for children in underserved communities.
Later this year, I’ll be appearing with Cameron Mathison in the ABC Family romantic comedy “Home Again.” I’m also working on developing a TV project with Luke Perry!"