BABYBROWNSUGAR MOM: GENEVIEVE ASCENCIO
Genevieve is a Director of Communications, co-founder of apparel brand Tee Chérie, and a full-time mom of 4! Her brand, which she started with her husband, is in its 3rd year and celebrates her Haitian roots. She aims to inspire her kids to take up space by providing them with examples of ambition and confidence in everything she does.
Where are you based and what are your favorite things to do in the area with your family?
I am based in Rockland County, NY, which most people from NY consider “upstate.” My family and I just moved here 6 months ago so I am still learning the area, especially because we have been limiting activities because of COVID but there is a short hiking trail near my house that I love walking with my kids.
How many little ones do you have and how old are they? What do you like most about this stage in their lives?
I have 4 kids. The oldest, Christina, came to my life when she was 5 via my (now) husband. My favorite thing about the teen stage is watching her come into independence. She recently got her permit and is displaying so much initiative as the oldest sibling. I am also MEGA excited to learn where she chooses to go to college! As for my 3.5 year old, Maya, she’s got so much personality. She is headstrong and keeps me laughing all the time. My 4 month old twins, Myles and Tyson, are starting to become aware of their surroundings and each other so watching them react and interact is thrilling. They change and grow everyday!
What does your kids' bedtime routine (or non-routine) look like in your household? Do you have any rituals that you swear by?
Well, bedtime for my toddler daughter is anarchy. She goes to bed around 11pm. Not proud of that but that’s where we are. Trying to avoid a floating bedtime with the boys so they get a bath, we play or sing for a little while in their nursery with the lights dimmed then they get their last bottle and go to bed. They go down between 9-9:30 but I am trying to push that a little earlier. Pray for me because my husband and I are sleep training Maya.
Tell us about your current role, project(s), or business(es) and what is your inspiration?
I am currently a Director of Communications at PepsiCo. That’s my other full-time job aside from being a parent and executive assistant to my kids lol. I also founded an apparel brand called Tee Chérie, with my husband. The brand is 3 years old and it’s a creative outlet for me and also a way for me to celebrate and promote my Haitian culture.
As a boss mom, what do you want to instill in your little ones?
Oh my goodness - so much! I hope to raise compassionate, confident, responsible and ambitious kids. Don’t expect anything to be handed to you in this life. Don’t apologize for taking up space on the contrary, shine your light everywhere you go. And it’s ok to take calculated risks. My husband and I work hard so that our kids can have some flexibility when they grow up. Not every decision has to be driven by “how much does it cost” or “how much money will I make?”
How has motherhood changed the way you move in the world?
Motherhood has made me more efficient, that’s for sure. I am beholden to my kids needs so I don’t always have the flexibility to work until 9 or 10pm so I have to use my time wisely to get it all done. It’s also made me plan ahead. Going to a birthday party? Order the gift 2 weeks early, wrap it and write the card. Kid has a theme day at school? Amazon what you need for it right away - dates and occasions sneak up on you really fast so you can never be prepared too early.
What has surprised you the most about your motherhood journey?
I LOVE LOVE LOVE to sleep. And my biggest fear in becoming a mom was how I was going to function with less sleep… the answer is, I just do! I am shocked at how I can perform with way less sleep than I used to get. I still love sleeping but I’ve adjusted.
Any advice you would give to new moms?
There is no feeling you have that is just unique to you. Join Facebook groups for parents you can relate to and share your experiences and ask questions. There isn’t an issue you’re having that hasn’t already been solved. Also, you are your child’s advocate in every situation - daycare, the doctor, everything. Do not be afraid to ask hard questions and challenge “experts” - a mother’s (or father’s) instinct is not to be ignored!
How do you allow others to support you as a mother and creator?
I had to learn to create the room for support because my village is there and they want to help. I don’t know why I felt like I had to do it all. So for me, allowing others to support means asking for what I need and then stepping away so they can give it to me…. Then accepting that help means… it’s not going to be EXACTLY how I would have done it and it’s OK!
Photo Credits: Chris Fox Kelly, Amy Nghe, Derreck Stanley