If there’s one thing that parents know after living through the year 2020, it’s that the word “no” carries a heavy burden. Throughout the pandemic, parents have had to say “no” more than ever before. “No, you can’t go to your friends house,” “no, you can’t have that 17th snack,” “no, we can’t go to that family member’s wedding,” and the list goes on and on.
Feeling the “no” fatigue herself is Jennifer Garner, who stars in the upcoming Netflix film, Yes Day.
Inspired by Amy Krouse Rosenthal’s book of the same name, Yes Day sees Allison (played by Garner), and Carlos Torres (Édgar Ramírez), two former free spirits who have become killjoys in raising their three children. In an effort to loosen up, the parents agree to a “yes day,” in which they let their children make all of the rules for 24 hours.
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While the “yes day” in the new movie looks like a thrilling disaster, the concept was pure bliss for Garner, who started having “yes days” with her three kids after realizing she was more of a drill sergeant with her kids than she wanted to be.
“My middle daughter was fascinated by the idea of a day filled with ‘Yes!’ Yes to ice cream for breakfast, a picnic, staying up late,” Garner wrote on Instagram. “Yes to skipping chores, torturing mom, s’mores, and flashlight tag in the dark.”
For the 48-year-old actress, “yes days” have been one way of lightening the load throughout this difficult time.
“This has been such a hard year for moms,” Garner told ET Online. “We have had to say ‘No, no, no.’ We’ve had to watch our kids be home, miss out on things. It is one thing to miss out on something as an adult, but to watch your kids miss something they have looked forward to or just how hard it has been to see them isolated and on Zoom every day… this is a breath of fresh air. This is a wish-fulfillment day of yes, and it is just so fun to watch moms watch the movie.”
In addition to having “yes days” with her children, Garner says another way she fosters positive experiences in her home is by attending to church together.
“It really just starts the whole week,” Garner said in an interview with MovieGuide. “Just singing together and being together for that hour just really starts us off right and I’m missing being in church physically in-person and that sense of community.”
Garner has been open about her Christian faith since returning to it back in 2016 while filming the movie, Miracles from Heaven. The film tells the true story of 10-year-old Annabel Beam, who had a near-death experience and was later cured of an incurable disease.
Playing the role of Annabel’s mom, Christy Beam, Garner says she was profoundly impacted by Christy’s Christian faith.
Yes Day premieres on Netflix this Friday, March 12.