February 2022 VIP SuperMom: Maura Burchette

February 2022 VIP SuperMom: Maura Burchette

Mother • Small Business Owner • Dream Chaser

Story by Liesel Schmidt

As owner of the children's store, Monday’s Child, the fact that Maura Burchette is a mother is never far from her mind. Surrounded daily by adorable children’s clothes, books, toys and special occasion clothing items, Burchette is constantly focused on children, even if they are different from the children at home. “As a mom of three boys, I like to joke that I needed a children’s store for my pink dress and bow fix,” she says with a laugh.

Married for 10 years, Burchette and her husband live in a historic home in Old Town, raising their sons in the city where they both grew up. “Our boys are nonstop action,” she says. “Our house is total chaos, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. We are lucky enough to be able to walk the boys to school and spend countless hours at Windmill Hill Park, and I’m also lucky to have my parents just a mile away and both my brother and sister in D.C.”

Living less than three blocks from the boutique, Burchette has an easy commute—but the need for balance is nevertheless still a struggle. “Being a working mom can be really tough!” she says. “But it’s so rewarding. I really love what I do and I feel incredibly grateful that I get to do it. Owning a store is a dream come true for me and being able to carry on the tradition and legacy that Monday’s Child has had for four decades feels very special. It's a constant juggle—with balls being dropped all the time—and there seems to never be enough hours in the day. My husband is incredibly supportive and I have the best nanny who helps me with the boys (and takes such good care of me) and the greatest staff at the store. Alexandria is also so unique in the way local businesses truly support one another and I’ve made so many new friends (even after living in Alexandria my whole life) by getting to know fellow small business owners, so many of whom are women and moms. Owning a small business is such a rollercoaster, from the lowest of lows to the highest of highs. It takes such a village to do it, and I have the best village.”

As much as the boys want her to stay at home with them all day, Burchette sees the big picture. “I really believe that when they are older, they will be glad that I had this job,” she observes. “I think it's important to have individual accomplishments and feel purpose in life, and I hope it sets an example for them to do what they love and what makes them happy. They are also too young to understand the incredible flexibility that comes with owning a small business. For the most part, I usually work while they are in school, and I try to spend as much quality time with them as possible. I also remind them all the time that I sell toys at my store—what’s not for a kid to like? Deep down, they know it’s enriching their lives.”

Not having experience as a business owner prior to owning Monday’s Child, Burchette faced a learning curve, but found value in pursuing her passion. “I’m proud of myself for chasing my dream and not just dreaming about it,” she says. “It makes me a better mother because I’m excited for what the new day holds and I think the family feels that enthusiasm. I never considered myself an entrepreneur, just someone who wanted her favorite adorable kids' clothes in her hometown. But I’m finding—and hope that other women will find—that if you just take the chance to open a business, you may realize that you are a businesswoman and can be a really good one. You just have to try.”

As her boys get older, Burchette hopes they always remember her love for them. “I want them to know that they were cherished and that we enjoyed life,” she says. “I want them to feel like I was a dedicated mother who was hands-on and spent quality time with them. I’m hoping to raise kind, caring, curious individuals who hopefully have a passion in chasing their dreams! And I hope they learn to not dress like a slob!”

There are, of course, special times for the family, times that will always be fond memories. “Sunday is for family,” she says. “When I bought the store, I was determined to be open all the time—weekends, holidays, after work for people—but we started closing on Sundays during the pandemic and now Sundays have become such a special time for me to check out from work and have a day with the kids and [my husband] Patrick. Running a small business is never-ending, but for the most part, I’m able to take a step away from the shop and spend the day with my kids. We have a great group of Old Town friends we usually gather with for dinner, and I look forward to it every week. Also, walking everywhere in Old Town with the kids feels very special to me; morning coffee runs for Misha’s; taking the dogs to Founders Park or Jones Point. I feel like my boys tend to open up during those walks and let me know what’s going on in their lives, though they also conveniently find time for deep chats when it’s past their bedtime! They say the craziest, best-things, and I wish I could write it all down.”

With three boys, Burchette is constantly on her toes, but also constantly learning. “All day, every day, I learn from them!” she admits. “It’s so humbling to be a mom. They encourage me to live in the moment and have fun wherever we are. I love how they don’t hold back at the playground and just embrace meeting and making new friends. They remind you of what unconditional love looks like. I’ve also learned how important it is for me to take care of myself so that I can take care of them. I meditate every day, try and eat well and live for Barre3 classes and walks listening to ‘Armchair Expert’ to try and keep sane. I’m learning every day!”


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