Days of our Lives star Galen Gering is keeping things steamy in Salem as the character Rafe Hernandez. The soap star, 42, is teaming up with some of his cast mates in the new book, Days of our Lives Better Living: Cast Secrets for a Healthier Balanced Life. The book that Doctor Oz calls, “… not only helpful, but entertaining…” is filled with cast secrets on how they achieve balance while inspiring readers to do the same.
Galen opens up to Celebrity Baby Scoop about his two sons – Dillon, 7, and Jensen, 5 – and their special holiday traditions. He also talks about his own childhood, saying, “We did not have a lot of rules and boundaries.” Galen goes on to share his Thanksgiving plans and the secret to his 20-year relationship with wife Jenna.
CBS: You’re a part of the new Days of Our Lives book called Better Living. It’s said to be full of “secrets” on how the show’s stars achieve life balance. How do you maintain balance with a busy acting career and a family?
GG: “Acting is truly a great job because I get to do what I love and still get a good amount of time off. I get to spend a lot of time with my family, definitely more so than other jobs. During my time off, we like to go on trips together.”
CBS: We have to ask about your “hippie” upbringing by French/Spanish artist parents in L.A. What was it like growing up this way? How did it influence your life today?
GG: “We did not have a lot of rules and boundaries. My sister and I got to do what we wanted at a young age, but that also made us very independent early on. My parents were both very loving and easy going.
As far as influencing my life today, I am still independent and have a non-judgmental, open minded view on life. I see the way I was raised as a gift and recognize a lot of positives that came from my upbringing.”
CBS: Your resume is quite impressive! You’ve been a model, film maker, writer, Pro Am volleyball player and actor. Which has been your favorite?
GG: “My life has been nothing short of an incredible journey and wild ride. I feel so fortunate to do all that I have done, and I’ve also worked extremely hard to get to where I am today. I can’t say I have a favorite, but if I could make a good living playing volleyball, I’d probably be leaning towards that path.”
CBS: You’ve been with your wife Jenna for years. How long have you been together? What are your secrets to a successful marriage?
GG: “Jenna and I have been together for 20 years. One of my secrets to a successful marriage is to find someone that that you love spending time with. Jenna and I complement each other very well and we also respect one another. Every relationship encounters problems, you just need to learn to deal with them properly and together.”
CBS: Tell us about your kids. What are their names and ages?
GG: “I have two sons: Dillon, 7-years-old and Jensen, 5-years-old.”
CBS: If we asked them to describe you as a father, what would they tell us?
GG: “They’d say that I’m the best father they’ve ever had! We have such a good time together and they know that I listen to them, support, love, and respect them.”
CBS: How has fatherhood changed you?
GG: “Fatherhood has made me think about everything in life differently. I inherently became less selfish. I want so much for my kids — I want them to have the things in their childhood that I did not.”
CBS: Do you have plans yet for the holidays? Do you have any special family traditions?
GG: “We’re travelling to Florida for Thanksgiving to see some family over there.
As far as traditions go, my boys and I always build a train around our Christmas tree and through a Christmas village that we set up every year. We also do Elf on the Shelf, who visits every year starting 12 days before Christmas. Elf gets into a lot of mischief, but he only comes out at night. The kids wake up to find what sort of trouble Elf has gotten into.”
CBS: What’s up next for you?
GG: “Getting started on my early Christmas shopping!”