How She Does It: Melissa Joan Hart
WD: Your new show is about faking a wedding—what's it like starring alongside Joey Lawrence?
MJH: We've known each other since we were four and literally run into each other at events and auditions all the time. It's really great when you're working with a TV professional and there is a certain comfort factor—we know how to work quickly, effectively and he just gets it. In TV you have to be very funny and lighthearted, and Joey definitely is.
WD: What was the most memorable moment from your own wedding?
MJH: The most memorable part of my wedding was during the vows. Mark was crying so hard and we were supposed to put our heads down, but his nose had filled up! I had my grandmother's handkerchief in my cleavage, so while the priest was speaking, I reached into my dress and everyone giggled—that was the only part of the day that didn't get caught on camera.
WD: Aside from your current role in My Fake Fiancé, are you working on any other projects at the moment?
MJH: Yes! We are so excited about opening our new sweet shop, SWEETHARTS in Sherman Oaks. It is adorable and has an old world feel. There will be self-serve frozen yogurt, baked cookies, cupcakes, gelato, coffee, and nostalgic candies—something for everyone.
I can't reveal specifics, but I also have lots of upcoming projects with my company, Hartbreak Films. I just finished a dark thriller movie—this will be the first time my audience will see me in this kind of character.
WD: How did you handle the pressure of being a role model to young girls as the star of shows Clarissa Explains it All and Sabrina the Teenage Witch?
MJH: I'm the oldest of eight kids and have always behaved myself because of them, I always wanted them to look up to me. When I did the Maxim shoot, I was really proud of it because I was doing something grownup. But when my brother told me it was getting thrown in his face at his high school, I decided I wouldn't do anything more risqué than that. The industry is different now with so many media outlets, but there are a group of us from my generation who want to do the right thing. We all want to have a real life outside of work with a family and kids.
WD: How do you manage to juggle your two boys, your husband, and a busy TV career?
MJH: Not much sleep! We take it one day at a time. I think a lot of is it is because of my husband—he is able to travel with me to most places and is a great dad. He's up in the room right now taking care of the boys! He changes more diapers than I do, he cooks—if it wasn't for him I'm not sure how I could do it.
I'm also able to work for a month and then be off for two months, so I get a lot of good family time and a lot of good work time. I'm a working girl—I need to be working to feel good about myself. But not seeing your kids will drive you nuts, so it's all about balance. What's nice about staying in a hotel when I am away from work is that it is just work and my family—no dog, no mail or car that needs to go in the shop. If I don't go into work until noon, we all have breakfast together and then go to the zoo or something like that.
WD: If you have any spare time, how do you like to spend it?
MJH: I always end up doing the dishes, cleaning the house or checking email—three things I hate. What I really like to do is scrapbook—I love taking pictures and putting my pictures somewhere where I can show everyone. I've done Mason's whole first year and now I'm working on Brady's. I don't get to do it that often, though, because it takes so much preparation. Mark and I like to watch the show House a lot, too.
WD: How do you and Mark keep the romance alive with all you have going on? How do you spend a typical date night?
MJH: We have a lot of date nights with other couples because if we go out by ourselves, we talk about what we have to do and stress! We also really love to go golfing and have afternoon lunch dates because we don't have the energy to go out for dinner at night. Right now I really enjoy Mark taking me to the driving range and teaching me how to golf better.
WD: What is your quick, on-the-go meal for the family?
MJH: My go-to meal is anything in the toaster oven. I cook fish sticks for the boys because they seem a little bit healthier than chicken tenders. One of my personal favorites is English Muffin pizzas! After you toast the English muffin for a little bit, throw some cheese on top and stick it in the toaster oven. Also, anything in the Crock Pot, we love. Mark takes whatever is in the fridge and throws it in and leaves it cooking all day so we have a nice healthy meal at night—one that doesn't require a lot of prep time.
WD: What's your secret for staying in shape?
MJH: I've actually just figured out how to fit workouts into my schedule in the last two months or so. I started going to a trainer and his gym—taking his classes and slowly building up. Now I go about 3-4 times a week. My friend and I also just started doing night time dance classes—a Pilates dance class—and that feels like I'm doing something fun, burning calories and spending time with a friend.
WD: What are the three songs that are getting the most play on your IPOD right now?
MJH: It's funny because I hardly ever listen to anything that's not a Disney movie.
"Bare Necessities" is something that the boys and I love to listen to. [I also like] "You're Gonna Go Far, Kid" by Offspring and "Jai Ho" from Slumdog Millionaire.
WD: Is there a special message you'd like to pass along to our readers?
MJH: For all the mothers out there—I really do see how the everyday American mom does it. No one thanks you for that. Celebrity moms get glorified for being able to do it all, but we have nannies and chefs to help! Even though you aren't getting the applause and the thank yous, there are still people out there like me that think you are heroes.