10th anniversary

Here we are celebrating Garderie Griffin’s 10th anniversary. In these ten years, we’ve seen nearly 500 children and dozens of educators come through our doors. In these ten years, we’ve experienced happiness in our work, sadness and even tears when our babies and educators moved on; excitement during special days and pride at graduations. But above all else, we’ve experienced love, solidarity, sharing and support, not just among ourselves but also with you.

When I decided to open my daycare, I wanted to offer an inclusive environment that was open to our differences, our cultures, each child’s uniqueness, and, most importantly, open to love and empathy. I could never have imagined, at a time when performance and perfection were paramount, that so many parents would adopt the idea of making the child the centre of everything . . . of their education, of their interests, of their choices, making them stewards of their own happiness and fulfillment. 

If I’m to be frank with you (a trait of mine that still frightens some parents 😉), I remain stunned by the commitment of my educators to this expectation of mine. And if today I can say I have the daycare of my dreams, it’s all owing to the educators who built this space for living with me, who worked tirelessly to make it happen, who cherished every child in their care: holding, cuddling and teaching them with all the empathy they might need so that they could flourish.

At this, our tenth anniversary, I can’t omit mentioning the pandemic years. When many children found themselves constrained by rules, instructions, and decisions that never took their needs and development into account, we felt as good as we always have at the daycare. United, happy to work, to hold our babies and children, to have fun . . . far, far away from what was going on in the outside world. We built a sort of cocoon. The babies and children, the parents and us. One big family that undertook to prioritize the interests and needs of the children. 

In my eyes, these are the most precious years. Small groups, fun and laughter, a close-knit team: my dream team. I’d like to take a moment to mention some of the educators who have marked this last decade:


The daycare’s first educator. If you’re reading these words, Manel, thank you and I hope that you and your family are doing marvelously. Maggie, who spent over three years with us. It was after a countless departure for a CPE (baby Abigaël) that we both broke down in tears and made a decision: Maggie decided she would work in a CPE, and me, I decided I would no longer work in the nursery. (I was there the whole day, I wanted 12 babies, the nursery barely took care of my maternal needs😉!) We both kept our word.


She came to see me when the daycare opened. It was love at first sight on both sides. But she didn’t have a diploma. I told her to do her AEC and come back to see me. In October 2015, she came back with a diploma in hand. And I hired her for a January 2016 start.


She came to us at a tough time. Mahfuza was on leave for a workplace accident, as was her daycare class colleague. Mahfuza sent Shahanaj to me who had just finished her AEC. With no one to guide or help her, she was absolutely incredible. She made her rounds to all the classes helping in any way she could, never stopping. She had never even worked before!

Karine Lagacé

Every educator at the daycare has heard of her. I’ve heard Sonia talk so much about her, how Karine nurtured and protected her in those first months, that it makes me think she’s like Ziyech or Saiss from the Qatar 2022 World Cup. Karine came to us in 2016. She wanted to learn more and started working in the office with me. Shortly thereafter, things got a little complicated for the daycare. But our little Quebecer impressed us all, fighting tooth and nail for the daycare. Without going into details, I just want to say thank you, Karine, and I wish you, your husband and little baby all the happiness in the world.

Since then? My family, your family and your children’s family: Mahfuza, Shahanaj, Kathleen, Vanessa, Sonia, Pilar (who had to go back to Spain because of the pandemic), Najat, Lucie, Jessica . . . my dream team. The power team, my friends, colleagues, associates and especially my family. You’ve been instrumental to building the daycare as we see it today. Because without you, the daycare wouldn’t be what it is today. It wouldn’t even exist. Each educator who moved on trained her replacement and made sure that her babies were happy and in good hands. And none of the educators have disappeared from our lives. They’re still here, like members of an extended family, albeit distant. We’ll always be here for one another.

But it takes more than three pillars to build a house, it takes four. The fourth one, which we often underestimate, is the one that keeps everything together, the glue that binds. The confidence our parents instilled in us, their unwavering support, their smiles, words of encouragement, happiness, sadness . . . We’ve shared all these moments together. It’s this glue, the one that binds us with the parents, that makes this daycare seem magical to us. It’s the only word that comes to mind every morning when I pass through these doors. Magical, happiness, joy, love, caring . . .

Remember . . . whatever the space, the decorations, the extras . . . a baby will not flourish without the love of their parents and educators, without this mutual trust that is essential to their development.

To close, I’d like to dedicate this introduction to all the extraordinary educators who have been part of my life, of Garderie Griffin’s life, and of all your lives, and to you, the parents of our children over the last 10 years. As I often say, I’m the conductor of this orchestra, our educators are the musicians (the most talented ones out there) and you are the music lovers. 😉

I would like to thank each and every one of you for these beautiful years and the magical ones yet to come. 

Maï Tabbara, Founder and Director