The fourth time I started Little Saints: A Catholic Preschool Program with Classical Disciplines by Cynthia Blum back in 2016 I said:

I’m not sure how much of the Little Saints Preschool Program we will actually get to this year… However, considering it could very well be the last year we have a pre-schooler (our “baby” will turn five in December… how did that happen?!), I’m going to try and fit some of it into our schedule.

Not long after that I found out I was pregnant! It was my hardest pregnancy ever (hyperemesis gravidarum plus back/hip/walking issues) followed by my most sleep deprived year and a half ever... and then our first move with children and then another pregnancy! I survived it all, but we definitely didn’t get very far with all the fun preschool extras!
I’ve attempted Little Saints enough times now to know that it’s highly unlikely that we’ll ever get through all the themes (at this point I don’t think it’s actually possible outside of a school setting, or at least not for this mom of many), but I’m still planning to pull it out when I can this school year (in addition to Primary Arts of Language and Math) as a starting place for some themed unit studies featuring picture books, learning games, and arts & crafts for our littlest ones… and of course I’ll add in some fun snacks too!
Here are some pictures from our first theme in September:  I Belong to God.  
.: Picture Books :. 
God is Love • A Child’s Book of Prayers
.: Learning Games :. 

In addition to “I Look Like… ” (using a mirror) and “I Sound Like…” (recording them answering questions) we also enjoyed a Photo Album Family History Tour. Next I pulled out the “Parts of the Body” Learning Game I cut out about twenty years ago… Can you believe I still have it?! 

Parts of the Body

Who Does Jesus Love? Keepsake Card
(I guess I missed taking pictures of this one… Here are pictures from 2011.) 
Child of God Matching Cards

(This matching game came with Little Saints.  
You can find a FREE PRINTABLE of my St. Joseph Memory Match in the archives.) 

.: Arts & Crafts :.
My Handprints

“Oh no! we have to get our hands dirty?!” 
Someone was super excited and someone was less than thrilled with that idea… 

I realized I had never introduced these too to finger paint before… Our 3 year old survived and realized it wasn’t quite as terrifying as she expected. We’ll have to try again sometime soon! Or maybe not…
The Heavenly Jerusalem 
.: Snacks :. 

On the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross – September 14th

Applesauce Spice Cross Cake

1 pkg Namaste Foods Spice Cake Mix
3 eggs
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup oil
1 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 fresh apple, grated or chopped (skin left on is okay)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
Powdered Sugar (optional for dusting)


Heat oven to 350˚ F. Grease and flour a cake pan. (I choose this Cross Shaped pan for the feast day.) Combine all ingredients and mix well. Bake for approximately 35-40 minutes. Cake is done when toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes and remove from pan. Cool completely and then dust with powdered sugar.

*This cake can also be baked in a 9×13 pan for 35-40 minutes, a bundt pan for 45-50 min, or 2 -9″ round layers for 30-35 minutes. 

Eventually I hope to share more of what we’ve been up to this school year. This week, at least for these two, it’s continuing on in Primary Arts of Language, finishing up “Colors” and moving into “Fall is Here!” We are headed to the pumpkin patch this afternoon! 

I have called you by name… you are precious in my eyes, and honored, and I love you. – Isaiah 43: 1-4


  1. Anonymous

    The girls look so adorable learning and doing projects. The little one doesn't like getting he r hands dirty. i don't blame her.

  2. foltz06

    Oh my goodness the crying with the hand paint! Too precious. My younger kids also haven't really used much paint. This was inspiring to me!

  3. Jessica Gordon

    Thanks, Marion! She really doesn't like getting her hands dirty… ever! She has always been our most proper baby, refusing to eat anything with her hands. Even pizza and hot dogs have taken coaxing and usually end up cut up so she can eat them with her fork! She is such a sweetie!

  4. Jessica Gordon

    Thank you! 🙂 It surprised me when I realized it was her first time! I apparently haven't been very good about pulling out art supplies (other than crayons and pencils) since we moved.

  5. Anonymous

    The cutest bakers ever! The cross is lovely.God Bless.

  6. Anonymous

    Love the little girls learning and working as cooks.

  7. CatholicMater

    We also have the parts of our body learning game! I have lost so many puzzle pieces over the years, but somehow this game is still alive after so many years, haha. Happy to see you are trying to incorporate Little Saints again. It's hard especially when there are so many fun options and then the older kids to school as well 🙂 Good job !!

  8. CatholicMater

    Question, how do you store all your books? Do you ever store some away and bring them out? Or do you have them out all the time in other bookcases?

  9. Anonymous

    I’m 58 and can relate to the tears re: fingerprint! I still don’t like the feeling!

  10. Karen H

    I just had to get my husband to come and look at these adorable photos! I described how you have these youngest two, such little beauties, and they are so happy and delighted as they play their matching card game, all smiles, up until it's time to do the 'My Handprints' craft. But..someone…is not happy about it….the ensuing photos say it best! You have captured something so precious and funny – hilarious! – and most likely they'll be cherished by little Joy when she's all grown up. I just love the happy ending where Joy is proudly dusting the Cross cake, all smiles again, under the watchful eye of her big sister. These are amazing photos, a pure delight! If you get ten thousand views, most of them will be me!

  11. Jessica Gordon

    That's so funny that you still have it too! I love that! And thank you! It is definitely taking some extra effort but our little girls are enjoying it so much.

  12. Jessica Gordon

    I've struggled with this since moving… Even though this house has a little more square footage (and closets) compared to our old home, we lost a couple rooms (a family room and a bedroom) and space for books.

    When I first did Little Saints I had a specific bookshelf that had all the books we had for the program sorted by weekly themes, then I'd fill in the gaps with books from the library. Now they are mixed up all over the place and I've been doing a little search through the house for each theme as we go.

    Each of our three kids bedrooms have one bookshelf, as well as some books on the shelves in the closet organizers we put in their closets, and books on my closet shelves too. I have three more bookshelves in the upstairs hallway, then the rest (four more) in the little bonus room upstairs that is currently our "school room". Books that are currently in use for each grade are on another cubby like shelf for each of our older students.

    I currently have the Christmas books (which used to get stored in my old closet which had a ton of shelving for seasonal things) in a basket, plus on the bottom "shelf" of my other rolling book cart (like the one pictured in this post that is near our dining room table), and on the bottom "shelf' of our keyboard in that upstairs schoolroom… but after this Christmas I will probably start boxing them up for the year to store until the next year to free up some space.

    I still have a few boxes of books that haven't been unpacked but I just don't have anywhere to put them yet. I've been going through the old schoolbooks and have about 5-6 boxes in the garage that I'm hoping to resell at some point, and a few more boxes with some of the older kids' college books they want to keep.

    One of the things that I didn't realize when we moved here was how much sun exposure our bookshelves – mainly two of the ones in the hallway and any that are across from the windows upstairs- were getting from all the huge windows in this house… A few of our bookshelves have really gotten some sun damage/color fading to the spines on all the books! (Some of my furniture too.) In Oregon our home was at the base of the mountain and shaded most of the day… I never even considered that the sun would damage things that are indoors so badly!

    Anyway… It sounds even more unorganized as I type it out. I've been hoping to figure out a way to reorganize and fit a couple more shelves in that upstairs room – maybe consolidate the shelves to a full floor to ceiling wall of shelves – but it hasn't happened yet!

  13. Jessica Gordon

    Awww! Well, I haven't tried again with her yet… I'm not sure she'll ever like the feeling either.

    I did take her grocery shopping with me yesterday morning and she actually let me put her in the seat of the shopping cart and said, "Mama, I not scared anymore!" … Previously she would scream if I tried to put her (even with her sister sitting right next to her) in the two seat Costco shopping cart, but she eventually would agree to sit in the basket part of the cart. I think I tried 4 or 5 times this year before she finally agreed to sit in that seat! I had never even considered this would frighten her, but I guess she never went to stores with me the last couple years, unlike most of our other children when they were babies.

  14. Jessica Gordon

    Our oldest daughter captured those pictures of her! I had sat my camera down and was right behind her, trying to console her and help her with the craft, when she picked up the camera and took some more photos. I'm so glad she did! The tears dried up as quickly as the paint, or at least as soon as it was washed off her hands!

    I asked her this morning, when we were looking through the pictures if she liked it and wanted to do it again… She said, "Noooo! But maybe when I'm bigger I can do the handprint craft!" We'll see!


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Prayer of Mothers

Father in heaven, grant me the grace to appreciate the dignity which you have conferred on me. Let me realize that not even the Angels have been blessed with such a privilege—to share in your creative miracle and bring new Saints to heaven. Make me a good mother to all my children after the example of Mary, the Mother of your Son. Through the intercession of Jesus and Mary I ask your continued blessings on my family. Let us all be dedicated to your service on earth and attain the eternal happiness of your kingdom in heaven. Amen.

Our Family

Sean & Jessica, Captain-23, Ranger-21, Twinkle Toes-20, Chiquita-18, Snuggles-16, Rose-14, Bud-12, Grace-6 and Joy-4 (blog nicknames)

A Little About Me

Hi! I'm Jessica, a Roman Catholic wife and home educating mother to our nine children. I was home educated myself, along with my eleven younger siblings. I have a special devotion to St. Therese, through whom I have been given much help and many blessings--the beautiful "Shower of Roses" that she has sent my way! Here I will record a few of the blessings I treasure. Please remember that what you see here is just a little glimpse at our lives, so please say a prayer for us, as we continue to strive for holiness.

My Other Blog: Catholic Cuisine

Please Visit My Sponsors…

This Week's Popular Posts

Shower of Roses Affiliate Links

All About Spelling
All About Reading
All About Reading Pre-reading
All About Reading Giveaways
As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Our Advent & Christmas Books

Shower of Roses Christmas Gift Guides

Looking for Something?

Looking Back

  • 2024 (1)
  • 2023 (30)
  • 2022 (48)
  • 2021 (48)
  • 2020 (57)
  • 2019 (61)
  • 2018 (90)
  • 2017 (128)
  • 2016 (148)
  • 2015 (172)
  • 2014 (227)
  • 2013 (238)
  • 2012 (308)
  • 2011 (297)
  • 2010 (313)
  • 2009 (486)
  • 2008 (564)
  • 2007 (148)