School History in Lafayette, CO


Take-A-Break is a privately owned company with the following history: In 1982 when I was expecting my first child my goal was to stay home and raise well-balanced children. However, I decided if I could raise one child then maybe I could help raise other children successfully. I decided to provide in-home child care. I found that I really loved doing child care and as it turned out, I realized that this is exactly where my strengths are. With six children of my own, it became very apparent that also I love being a mother. The longer I stayed in the child care field, the more apparent the need for quality child care became to me. I began to realize the large impact providers make in children's lives. I quickly earned the trust and respect of my neighbors and friends and my business began to grow rapidly. In 1984 I employed my younger sister to help me out. She stayed with me until 1987 and she has continued to help me out occasionally over the last 25 years. After my sister left, I began to realize how stressful it was to work long hours with children without any relief. I decided to gather information on what created stress for parents and home care and center care providers. This coupled with nobody to help me out when I needed a break, helped me form the concepts for Take-A-Break back-up child care services.

In 1987 I began to work on the Take-A-Break concept with a friend and became business partners. Together we worked through all the stages of developing a corporation. We opened the back-up care business in October of 1989. Our main focus at that point was to provide back-up care to in-home care providers.

In 1990 I developed the concept of combining Corporations together to meet employee needs. Over the next several years, I began providing services for the BBDCA (Boulder Business Defendant Care Association) as well as three other large consortium's. This gave us a client base of approximately 58,000. In March of 1997 we scaled back our services to provide care to corporations on a private one on one basis and have been doing that since. In 1993 I opened Take-A-Break Creative Interest Center. I did combination care for children from 21/2 to 12 years old. I ran this program like a one room school house. I maintained my daycare home license and continued to provide care for a small number of infants and toddlers in my home. I did this until I was able to lease and renovate the large property across the alley from my first center. Upon completion of the large property in 1997, I was able to open my first center up to just infants and toddlers and my large center became the home for my youth and preschool programs.

In 1999 I moved out of my home in Lafayette and renovated this area to serve infants. This made it possible for me to serve more families.

In 2001 I opened a second center in Boulder at the Frasier Meadows Health Care Facility. Here, we provide care for children 1 to 6 years old. The children participate in many inter-generational activities.

In 2006 I renovated the infant house to be able to provide care for infants and toddlers in the same building. I then moved our youth in to a larger building. We now have three buildings caring for 97 children at a time. We have an excellent program providing care for English and Spanish speaking children.

We are a specialty center providing care for children from varied backgrounds. We provide a solid foundation for all children and help them develop healthy social, emotional, and academic skills. We give all the children the opportunity to grow and develop in a healthy environment allowing them to learn at a pace that is good for them.

Over the past 25 years, Take-A-Break has grown at a successful pace and I have had the opportunity to serve thousands of children. In addition to running the centers, I serve as a board member for The Colorado Child Care Association, as well as, served on the Citizens Police Academy for the City of Lafayette Police Department, and I am a Master Trainer for The Child Welfare League Of America's Positive Parenting and Street Law programs. I also
teach “Becoming A Better Parent” parenting classes for LDS Social Services through the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

We opened a beautiful new facility in 2011. This building has been a true blessing and we have had the opportunity to serve several more families, When we went to the city for approval on this site we were asked to include a 2000 square foot space for retail. With no one interested in the retail and us needing to use all of our space, we are now renovating it to be a multipurpose area and fun youth room. This space will be ready to use in August 2012.

I am excited about what the future holds. With positive thoughts and happy children anything in the world is possible.

D'Arla