Gymboree Aliso Viejo Review

It isn’t easy finding clean, safe and fun spots to bring my kids. However, I was able to try out a class recently at Gymboree in Aliso Viejo, and I was pleasantly surprised. The staff seemed professional and passionate about children, and the program they offer. I found the environment was clean and much safer than other “play areas” I have been to recently.

Believe it or not, I had never taken a Gymboree class with my other two older kids. I always passed by the various locations, but never was exactly sure if my kids would enjoy their program. I’m so glad I went in this time. The class was perfect for my sons age 1 1/2 years old. I felt completely comfortable, even though I didn’t know anyone in the class. My son immediately took to the teacher Mr. Ryan. The music was so great and they did bubbles, parachute and some dancing. The best part for me was that it seemed the toys and equipment were much more stable and safe for younger toddlers and babies. Even more so than “My Gym”. The Gymboree play area was a small area and very padded. I liked that I didn’t need to chase after my son, hoping he wouldn’t hurt himself on the play equitment. I was pleased with the set up and also noticed the range of activities available for both little girls and little boys. My son loved playing with the little cars and balls they had all around the play area, when he didn’t feel like climbing or running around. Every toy seemed to have a “brain development” or motor skill lesson to accompany it. It was all in its place for a reason.


I also liked the group of parents that I found myself mingling with during the class. All seemed very happy to be there with their children. They seemed more of a community or family, than other classes I have taken. We chatted while our children played. I especially liked that their was not too much circle time. When you have a 1-2 year old, forcing them to sit in a circle half the class is not an easy task. Especially, when your child is the third boy (like mine)! He is going…going at all times, and I was not looking forward to being the only mom quietly chasing my kid while all the other children sat quietly in “criss cross applesauce”! Luckily, when we did sit in a circle, the children seemed all very focused on the music and the teacher. My son sat great, and just when he started to get a little squirmy, they were all able to go play on the equipment again, and then the class was over!


I’m so thankful for the Gymboree team helping support mom friendly businesses and hosting our last event at their location. I figured I should probably try one of their classes, since it was just too cute in there not to! Not only did I end up loving the class I tried, but I also liked a lot of the products they sell! They are little more expensive than grabbing the normal bubbles or clown puppet at target, but these toys are really well made and all serve a learning purpose.
I for one will for sure be back to sign up for more classes with my little one.

Special for Morning Mommy Brew readers only for the Aliso Viejo Location only:
If you mention this blog your membership fee will be waived!

*The membership fee is a one-time fee of $50 that will be waived for our readers. The class fees (billed monthly) would still need to be purchased, and begin at $89/month. Open Play (different from the Play & Learn class discussed above) is offered every day and is included for free when you sign up for classes. Non-members can pay $10 to come to Open Play. Play & Learn classes are 45 min long with age groupings of about 6 months, and an instructor leading games and activities and explaining why they are good for your child’s development. Open Play is all ages (0-5yrs) and is unstructured playtime (no teacher leading games and songs).

*I was not paid in anyway for this review.

Gymboree Play & Music, Aliso Viejo
Aliso Viejo
27131 Aliso Creek Rd., #140
Aliso Viejo, CA 92656 United States
(949) 680-7187

Jan 19th Gymboree Aliso Viejo

Morning Mommy Brew and our Fabulous Sponsors, invite you to partake in our “Healthy Living Expo” Tuesday Jan 19th at 9:30 am at Gymborree Aliso Viejo! We are pleased to announce parents and kids will have activities, FREE open play, shopping and learning about health and welness for the whole family! There will be refreshments available outside the play area and a raffle with GiVEAWAYS you don’t want to miss!


Please come prepared at entry for the following rules:

*Children ages 0-4yrs may play on the play floor, but must have an adult within “hugs reach distance” at all times. Adults must wear socks on the play floor (no shoes allowed), children go barefoot (to prevent slipping). No food or drink is allowed on the play floor. *

*Cash/credit card for shopping

Their will be a limited number of RSVP’s allowed. First 25 people to arrive will get a special gift!

RAFFLE TICKETS are 2.00 each and can be purchased at the door (CASH ONLY).

*If you own a business and are interested in advertising at our event, please contact:

The Fun awaits! Can’t wait to see you all there.

Morning Mommy Brew

If you are a vendor that would like to be considered for this event. Or a business or vendor that would like to donate to the event raffle or be a sponsor. Please email me at:

Get Your Metabolism Working for You, Not Against You.

I never figured out some of the sure fire ways to speed up my metabolism, until I was older and had to shed baby weight. But, thank god I have now figured out what really works! More importantly, I know how to loose weight the healthy way, without crash diets or bouncing back and forth on the scale. I am no nutritionist, or trainer, but rather a mom of three that has done her research.

With the holidays quickly approaching, I know we all want our metabolisms to be working extra fast so that we can have a couple cheats and not worry how our body will burn the extra calories/fat.

1) Put on muscle: I was one of the many woman that thought that building muscle would just make me look “bigger”. So not true! This is the first and quickest way to burn fat throughout the day. What works for me is; at least two solid weight lifting sessions for 40-1 hr a week. I no longer just lift 2-5 lbs, like I did in my college years, because I know now I will not get bigger. I will not burn fat, if my muscles are not working. I lift up to 20 lbs; depending on the muscle group I’m working, repations and exercise. If you take one piece of my advice from this article, let it be to start putting on muscle. I promise, you will see immediate results. If you do not know how to lift properly, get help from a friend or trainer who does.

2) Intensity training: This has really worked for me when I needed to shed the last 5-10 lbs. I started to watch myself in the mirror at the gym. I noticed, if I were looking at myself, I would work harder. I would realize I wasn’t really sweating like I should, therefore not working hard enough. You should feel like you are working at at least an 8 on a scale of 1-10 and then give yourself a recovery period afterwards. It was very hard for me to time myself during my solo workouts. So I decided to take up spin. I do this 1-2 days a week. It is a great intensity workout with interval training and never the same workout. It pushes you to work hard for a short amount of time for example 30 seconds and recover for 90 Ect.. Keeps your metabolism working and heart pumping, so you burn more fat!

3) Eat clean and Know what works for your body: Eating clean is the new “fad”. With the whole30 routine and many similar plans, you can learn how to eat healthy fats and choose correct foods that will allow your body to burn fat and stay in optimal health.

For me, I have found that a mix between eating clean and the weight watcher diet, works best. To clarify, I eat clean but, watch my fats and proteins closely. I eat mostly vegetables, fruit and proteins. All naturally derived foods/ingredients and very lean proteins. For example: eggs, beans, fish (occasional turkey sausage or turkey bacon (minimally processed). I also watch the amount of sugar (even fruit) and carbs I consume.

I have to be very careful A. Portions of proteins B. Sugar I use the weight watchers principals of no protein bigger than the palm of my hand and stick to only natural sugar and very little of it. 90% of being in good shape has to do with what you put in your body, so always ask yourself this question before eating something that may taste yummy, but great for you: “Is this worth it”? If your answers yes, have a couple bites and put it down. If your answers no, don’t do it. (If you know you can’t just have a couple bites, don’t do it).

4) Challenge your body always: Don’t do the same thing every day or every week. I try all the classes at my gym. Not because I want to do all them, but because I want to challenge different muscle groups and not plateau. I use to think, if “it’s not broken don’t fix it,” applied to loosing weight and burning fat too. In reality, if you are seeing results that is great! But, in order to continue seeing results, you must challenge your body more. Do different exercises, more reps, more weight or more intervals ECT

5) Have cheat days/nights one-two times a week: Give yourself a treat for being good the other days of the week. Don’t let yourself “crave”. Indulge enough to get it out of your system and then detox the next day, so you don’t feel guilty.

Top 5 Favorite Fat Burning Excercises to Boost your Metabolism:

Weight training with lunges
Spin Classes

Some Holiday tips that I always keep in the back of my mind:

A. Wine and most alcoholic beverages are super high in sugar. Sugar turns into fat. But, their are other drinks that you can enjoy that are lower in sugar for example: Vodka or scotch (Choose what you mix your drinks with wisely). Soda water is my go to mixer.

B. Always do something active, if you know you have a party or holiday celebration that day or night. This allows you to make sure you are moving and not just indulging.

C. Think of slowing down while you eat. What works for me: Picture yourself as a person in the room, watching you eat. If you are shoveling food in your mouth (that is not super cute to watch). If you are tasting each bite, cutting small pieces and enjoying your food..way more fun to watch!

D. Wear tighter clothes. (: Sounds funny?! But, it works. If you are wearing tighter pants/jeans or dress ect.. You are not going to be able to physically let your tummy get to bloated. It won’t feel so great. This will force you to take smaller portions and only eat what you can fit in your tummy and not more.

In the end, we all want to enjoy life and especially the holidays. So why not get in tiptop shape before, so you don’t have to watch yourself as closely during the fun times! Indulge, but be smart and realistic. Know your body and do your research. Don’t just trust me. Play around with your exercise routines and eating habits, see what works best for your body. As we get older, we all have to work a little harder to look and feel our best..however, if you find a purpose or a reason to really reach your goal you will. Good luck and hold yourself accountable! I know I am.

Gluten Free Halloween Treat.

In my old age, and now with three kids..I’ve decided to start cutting some corners with my baking. I’m not ashamed, as long as I use box mixes that I can read all the ingredients, and I know are healthy for my family. We decided to start getting in the Halloween spirit early this year. We baked up some yummy Gluten free pumpkin muffins. As always, I spiced it up with some hidden veggies and Chia seeds. I find the best and ONLY place my kids will eat veggies is in muffins and soups. So, I try to make them as often as possible and freeze them. They last for months in the freezer and all you have to do is take them out a couple hours before you want to eat them, and let them defrost naturally.

My kids LOVED these Gluten free Pumpkin muffins from Trader Joes, even the neighbors devoured them! So, I thought I would share a healthy treat the whole family can make together and enjoy! I would much rather have these sitting around the house to snack on, as opposed to Halloween candy.


Healthy Pumpkin Muffin Receipe:
1 cup water
1/2 cup vegetable oil
Trader Joes Gluten Free Pumpkin Bread Mix
1 zucchini
Handful of spinach
1 banana-helps to sweeten up the mix and hide the veggies a little better
Tbsp Chia Seeds

2 eggs
Cupcake tins-makes about 24 depending on muffin sizes

Optional additions:
My kids like to dip their muffins in applesauce or you can spread a thin layer of cream cheese on the top. Most kids love sauces and dips. Add another layer of healthy sweetness, instead of the regular frosting.



Super easy! Just set your oven to 400 degrees. Times vary depending on oven so 18-22 min on average, but check as you go. My kids watch for the whole time anyway.. ( like to see them grow)!

While the oven heats up, mix all ingredients above together in the mixer. Make sure you cut the spinach up finely before putting in the mixture, and grade the zucchini. My kids love to help with the grading. After all the ingredients are into the bowl, mix on medium speed until batter is smooth and not clumpy. Pour into muffin tins and bake! Cool and ready to eat. Eat some and freeze some. Enjoy!! Happy Halloween from my family to yours!image1

My New Running Partner

Its rare that I find a workout item or product that I really fall in love. But, I have to share one of them. For years, I have been trying to become a runner. Although, I find it so hard to run with music. Music is a must for me, while I workout. I hated holding my phone, while wearing headphones, only to mess up my posture and keep having to switch between hands. I’ve tried running with my music in between my sport bra and shirt, never works. A couple times, I tried laying my phone on front part of the treadmill (with my headphones in) only to have it fall off and almost kill me while I’m running fast on a treadmill trying not step on it! Until now, I hadn’t found any solution that worked.

Even worse is not having a place to put your keys or money while you run. If I’m not at the gym, and I decide to go on a quick do I get back in my house? I’ve tried the key in my shoe, no luck-it hurts. I’ve tried the sport bra trick here too. But, actually have lost my keys and credit card several times.

I finally found a product that solves all my problems. I found the Mr. Visibility Arm Band to be brilliant! It solves all my problems, and doesn’t slip down on my arm while I sweat!
My iphone cost me A LOT of money, so I’m all for protecting it while I workout and being able to listen to my tunes! I highly suggest this product! Unfortunately, now I have no excuse but to RUN!! I think I’ve found my new running partner.