Camila Alves McConaughey reflects on raising her family in Texas: ‘It really embodies our belief system’ – Reuters

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Camila Alves McConaughey raised her family in the Lone Star State — and she wouldn’t have it any other way.

The Women of Today founder and her husband Matthew McConaughey live in Austin, Texas with their three children Levi, 13, Vida, 12, and Livingston, 9. The 52-year-old actor was born in Uvalde, Texas.

The children’s author told Fox News Digital that she and her family don’t mind living outside of Hollywood — they prefer it.

“It was great,” said the 40-year-old. “It really embodies our belief system, especially the one I grew up with, like going to church every Sunday and saying ‘yes ma’am’ or ‘no sir.’ I grew up saying these things from a farming family. Being from Brazil and then coming to Texas, I discovered many similarities in what families practice here, especially going to church on Sundays and being very interested in the outdoors. It was a great transition.

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Livingston Alves McConaughey, Camila Alves McConaughey, Levi Alves McConaughey, Matthew McConaughey, Vida Alves McConaughey and Kay McConaughey attend the Texas Medal Of Arts Awards on February 27, 2019 in Austin, Texas.
(Gary Miller/Getty Images)

“We lived in Malibu for many years and having the paparazzi at our door every day — every day — when it becomes normal, you don’t realize how much it actually affects the things you do until you walk out,” she continued . “Children have their own way of growing up. So from that point of view it was very important. »

Her stepmom Kay recently moved in during the coronavirus pandemic.

“We joke about it all the time,” laughed Alves McConaughey. “Before she came to live with us, she had a different take on the kind of advice she would give us. Now that she lives with us, she gives a completely different perspective. she is softer »

“I think when you become a grandparent, you’re more forgiving of situations,” Alves McConaughey said of the 90-year-old matriarch. “Sometimes I discipline the kids or have a tougher conversation with them and I can tell she has this face like she doesn’t feel good about it. Like, ‘You have to do this?’ But not only did she have a huge impact on our children’s lives, she also made a huge impact on ours. She brings so much joy into our home.

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Camila Alves McConaughey with her mother-in-law Kay McConaughey at a concert in Austin, Texas.

Camila Alves McConaughey with her mother-in-law Kay McConaughey at a concert in Austin, Texas.
(Gary Miller/Getty Images)

And Alves McConaughey insisted their household be like any other as they work together to raise the children.

“Matthew is who the kids usually go to [if they want to get away with something] said Alves McConaughey. “But Matthew and I have a pretty good system where we don’t play good cop, bad cop. Children need to understand that as parents, we are on the same page. »

The advocate for healthy eating recently wrote her first children’s book, Just Try One Bite. She teamed up with author Adam Mansbach for the comedic role reversal, pitting picky parents against their kids.

“Look, I’m not here to tell parents how to feed their kids,” Alves McConaughey said. “I just want to share how important it is to have a connection with food. I truly believe that if you start the conversation early, instead of just not talking about it and just trying, you are more likely to instill good habits for life in your children. through the movements. Eating is part of our life. For example, when my kids started playing sports, they all saw sports drinks on the field and of course they wanted some too. I’d tell them, ‘You can have some, but we’re not taking gallons of sports drinks.’ »

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Camila Alves McConaughey wrote her first children's book entitled

Camila Alves McConaughey has written her first children’s book, Just Try One Bite.
(David Livingston/Getty Images)

“We made a game out of it,” she says. “We looked at the bottle, then the list of ingredients. They were like, ‘Ooh, Red #3! It looks so cool.’ And I said, ‘Do you recognize that from our kitchen? Sounds really cool, but what is it?’ Whoever comes to dinner with the most information about what it is and where it came from gets a treat. It turned into a conversation over dinner where we sparked curiosity.

“We were at the supermarket the other day,” she continued. “I said to my daughter, ‘You can have a cupcake if you want.’ She said, “No, look at all that food coloring. It looks neon colored. And then we made some together later at home. But she’s already having this aha moment of what’s going on on our plates and how it’s done affects our body.

And Alves McConaughey insisted his kids had taught him lessons along the way, too.

“Coming from a farming family – the relationship from seed to table was very clear from the start,” she said. “But we never had the sugar talk. I grew up with as much sugar as I wanted. Today I have problems with it. I look at my husband and at his house they had the sugar talk early on. He can enjoy a dessert and then say, “I’m done.” »

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Camila Alves McConaughey is co-founder of the just keep livin foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering high school students by giving them the tools to lead active, healthy lives.

Camila Alves McConaughey is co-founder of the just keep livin foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering high school students by giving them the tools to lead active, healthy lives.
(Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)

“It’s not about limitations, it’s about having a healthy relationship with food and learning where it comes from,” she emphasized. ” I will [my family] feel empowered and make better decisions for yourself… I had my stash hidden in the pantry. I thought I was being all sneaky like nobody knew. And one day when I catch something, the three of us [of my kids], “We got you! What are you doing right now? They tell us not to do this. And they were right. So they inspired me to improve my eating habits and find a balance. »

When Alves McConaughey isn’t cooking in her Texas kitchen with her three faithful helpers, she’s hanging out with her husband.

“Usually our romantic evenings are very cold,” she said. “It’s about being creative. I think often couples with families are so busy that they think the date night has to be that big romantic date or that big trip together. Sometimes it’s as simple as staying. Or: “I send the children to a family member so that we can stay at home and have a drink together.” »

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Matthew McConaughey and Camila Alves McConaughey always make time to hang out together at home.

Matthew McConaughey and Camila Alves McConaughey always make time to hang out together at home.
(Rick Kern/Getty Images)

“I have this thing — we have a tree on our property,” she shared. “Sometimes I say to Matt, ‘Let’s meet up before dinner tonight and watch the sunset under the tree.’ We just sit under the tree and have a drink together. It’s about sharing those little simple moments between everything that’s going on. It’s about those little moments to keep reconnecting.

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