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Days: Alison Sweeney interview from Modern Mom

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Alison with her son, Ben

In my weekly column "10 Questions," I interview an inspirational mom about how she balances her family, career and self.

This week, Days Of Our Lives' Alison Sweeney shares her secrets to balancing motherhood and a busy career, her addiction to Diet Coke and more.

Lolita: What's your definition of a Modern Mom?

Alison: There is no easy answer to this. In 2007, so many women are career moms, I think that is a really tricky balancing act. But, Modern Moms are making it work. I think for a long time working moms felt they had to separate their family from their work persona - try to hide the mom in them at work. But lately, a lot of moms I know embrace their family lives and incorporate it to make them even better at their careers.

Lolita: What's your secret to balancing career and family?

Alison: The main thing for me is taking it one day at a time. It is definitely a juggling act, but if I look at the big picture of all the stuff I've got going on, it's easy to feel overwhelmed. Taking it one day at a time helps me to get everything done.

Lolita: What did your parents teach you about parenting?

Alison: My parents were great at encouraging my brothers and me to try new things. I was never a picky eater or afraid to try new activities. My parents encouraged us to try sports, after-school activities and all sorts of new things. That mindset has helped me tremendously in my life and I hope I can share that with Ben.

Lolita: What do you want to teach Ben?

Alison: There are so many things I want to teach Ben as he grows! A really important thing for both my husband and me is that Ben has good manners. I really want him to grow up being a polite and well-mannered child. He isn't even two yet and Ben already says 'please' and 'thank you'. He's a very sweet and kind little boy, he laughs all the time, and shares easily. I think that's so important, so I really want to continue to encourage him in that direction.

Lolita: What’s your favorite family activity?

Alison: We take family walks with our two dogs. It's so much fun to walk in the park together. We do a lot of fun stuff - family trips and such - but just playing together in the park as a family is my favorite.

Lolita: Who do you admire most?

Alison: My biggest inspiration are all the working mothers who find the perfect balance when juggling their careers and their families.

Lolita: What is your greatest achievement?

Alison: I would definitely say Ben is my greatest achievement to date. Though I guess I can't take a lot of credit for him turning out so great. Nature, and my husband, Dave, had a lot to do with it.

Lolita: What product(s) can’t you live without?

Alison: The first thing that comes to mind is Diet Coke. Ha! I am totally hooked on it, though I probably shouldn't admit it. And my Kiehl's lip balm. Especially right now - it's so dry, and I am constantly re-applying. And as a mom, I would say Crayola's washable crayons are just a genius idea! Couldn't live without them!

Lolita: What do you do when you’re feeling selfish?

Alison: Get a massage. It is such therapy for me, to take a break from work, and family and everything and just zone out. But it totally revitalizes me to get back to the real world and give 100% when I take time out like that.

Lolita: What’s keeping you busy these days?

Alison: I have a lot of projects I'm working on. Besides Days of our Lives, which always keeps me busy, I have been focusing lately on an Internet drama I've produced called "In Tune" that I am so excited about. You can find out more about it at www.intertube.net, if you're interested. This whole thing is a new process for me but I really enjoy it, and it definitely keeps me busy. And obviously, I spend every free moment I can with Ben.

Alison Sweeney joined the cast of NBC’s “Days of our Lives” on January 6, 1993 at the age of 16. Sweeney has taken her character, ‘Sami Brady,’ from a rebellious teen to a devoted single mother with many detours along the way. Sweeney currently lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Dave, a Los Angeles Highway Patrol Officer, and their one-year old son, Ben.


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