August 21, 2008

Garner’s Busy With Babies, but She’s Also in the Spotlight

By Sharon Knolle

LOS ANGELES -- Jennifer Garner will begin promoting two films for 2009, but right now she's concerned with only one project. "This," she says, pointing to her swollen belly.

The pregnant actress, who already has one child, 2-year-old Violet, with husband Ben Affleck, won't reveal her due date but smiles coyly when asked whether she plans on more children: "Yeah, next year, I think I might have one."

Garner was at the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles on Wednesday to host the 10th anniversary celebration for Baby Einstein, a series of books, toys and DVDs that help parents interact with their children. Other celebrity parents at the event included Melissa Joan Hart with 5-month-old son Braydon; Sean Patrick Thomas and wife Aonika, who brought 3-month-old daughter Lola; and soccer star Mia Hamm with 16-month-old twins Ava and Grace.

Despite her pregnancy, Garner had as much energy as any toddler at the event, jumping up to help the camera crew that was breaking down a set around her and then running across the room to bring a Baby Einstein toy to a child who wanted to play with it.

Garner, who will soon begin promoting films The Ghosts of Girlfriends Past with Matthew McConaughey and This Side of the Truth with Ricky Gervais, says she discovered the Baby Einstein products the same way many mothers do -- through her friends and baby showers.

"You need a starting-off point when you're playing with a baby that isn't talking," she says. "It's a long day -- to sit and stare at a baby! So to have something that lights up and makes music is so wonderful. I grew up in a household where there was classical music all the time, so I find it very nostalgic and comforting to hear a little bit of Vivaldi or Beethoven."

Games in Garner's childhood consisted mostly of "chewing on spoons and knocking pans together," she says with a laugh. "It's great we have so many products available now, but I think my mom did a great job with what she had, too."

Garner says she often turns to her friends and sisters for parenting advice. "I ask them about everything imaginable," she says. "'What do I wear? Why does this feel that way? How did you deal with this?' ... I have a huge female support group, and I can't imagine a day without them." (c) Copyright 2008 USA TODAY, a division of Gannett Co. Inc. <>