Jennifer Garner is taking a break from Hollywood this weekend with a trip home to Charleston, West Virginia — and taking time to remember her childhood dreams.
“This is about as far from Hollywood as any place on Earth. I wanted to be a children’s book author and a librarian,” she told People of her youthful aspirations.
“My mom took my sisters and me to the library once a week when we were kids,” she continued. “And it’s such a huge community center, especially in a town that has very few resources — to have a place with 100 computers and Internet access to everyone for free, that’s really important in a town like this.”
But besides a trip down memory lane, Jennifer is using her trip to give back.
On Friday, she reportedly hosted a black-tie gala event, Starry Starry Night, with husband Ben Affleck. The event raised $475,000 toward a new athletic center for the University of Charleston. She’s dedicating the new building to the memory of the parents of childhood friend and current state senator, Corey Palumbo.
Before the gala, Ben learned that even Hollywood glamour sometimes needs some help from home.
“When we got off the plane, Ben realized he had forgotten his bow tie,” Jennifer revealed. “I had worked at Kelley’s Men’s Shop all through high school, so I said, ‘Let’s go to Kelley’s.’ And everybody I knew was there.”
She was also reportedly set to do a reading of Julia Donaldson’s “Room on the Broom” to help eventually expand the public library.
As the mother of Violet, 2, and with another baby on the way, Jennifer must be doing a lot of reading — but she says that her own children’s books may be a ways off.
“I would love to [do one],” she said. “But I haven’t had the inspiration yet.”
For now, the expectant mom is just glad to be back.
“I’m always so happy to come home,” she said. “There’s never enough time. Just seeing the mountains, and seeing the green, and the river is the most soothing thing in the world for me.”