March 2021

March 11 & 12, 2021 - Author Book Read and Talk, 4th Grade, as part of their lessons on immigration.  Donald P. Sutherland Elementary School, Nassau, NY. 


Also in March, I had the exciting opportunity to join Quinn Cummings on her podcast, Parenting & Bonding w/Children's Books.   The topic: "Helping Moms Use Story to Connect."  We discussed the importance of sharing family stories and family heritage with children of all ages. Children need to know they belong.  Take a listen.

Parenting & Bonding

w/ Children's Books

Click the link below to have a listen

December 2020/January 2021

Grandchildren of friends sharing One of Thirteen they received as a present! Love seeing their smiling faces. 


Thank you to Mrs. Treiber, 1st grade teacher at Donald P. Sutherland Elementary School in Nassau, NY, for allowing me to share One of Thirteen with her class.

Excerpt from:  Times Union LIVING article, Nov. 8, 2020:  

“Books with local authors, ties to put on your reading list”  by Jack Rightmyer

"One of Thirteen” by Catherine Zampier (Saratoga Springs Publishing)

This beautifully illustrated children’s book follows the adventures of Olga, an independent young girl who is one of the 13 Russian immigrant children in her family. The story takes place in the 1940s in Maplewood, the small hamlet between Watervliet and Cohoes. Zampier, who lives in Saratoga Springs,(sic: Actually live in East Greenbush, NY) captures the joy and love that is usually found in big families. After the story there are questions related to family heritage and discussion questions that will help young people talk about the importance of family.

Complete article:

Feedback/Comments from Readers

". . . brought tears to my eyes . . . ."  -Rosanne H.

"Took your family tree page as a project/challenge. So rewarding. My grandparents , both sides, born in Germany between 1860 to 1890."  -Kurt E.

WOW!!!! I  just read your book to my granddaughter! We both loved it! I can relate in so many ways.  - Cathy Y.

"I loved the book."   -Anne M.

I love the book!!  Great story and illustrations. -Terri E. 

Big and Beautifully illustrated, with a heartwarming story of family love and sibling relationships in 1940s upstate New York.  Suspenseful, fun and easy to read, with problems presented, consequences of choices, lessons taught, and, spoiler alert.....a very happy ending.  Highly recommended children's book. --John T, NJ (Amazon review)

November 2020 -- Family Notes from illustrator, Robert (Bob) Wayne Bode

My mother was one of fourteen and my father was one of eleven.  

It made for a lot of cousins!

My mother grew up on a farm in northwest Washington state with 40 acres which they cleared and used to raise cows and chickens. The boys were kept busy with the farm work, while the girls were inside cooking and canning. There were two times when the family was sure to be all in one place: in church and at the family dinner table. On Sundays, the whole family rode to town in one car. The older boys stood on the running boards and hung on for dear life! At the family dinner table, when the 14th child was born, there simply wasn’t any more room at the table. Eventually, the older ones began leaving home and got married.


Below is Bob’s mother’s family of 14 kids.  His mother is in the front row, second from the right.

Bob Bode's mom

October 2020 --  Book Signings


Cross Eyed Owl Gift Shop, Valatie  -  10/17/20

Impressions of Saratoga  -  10/2/20

September 2020

In every conceivable manner, the family is a link to our past, bridge to our future. ~~ Alex Haley

A family doesn't have to be perfect; it just needs to be united. 

~~Betsy Farrell

"Happiness is having a large, loving, caring, close-knit family in another city."  -- George Burns

When all the dust is settled and all the crowds are gone, the things that matter are faith, family, and friends. ~~ Barbara Bush

The world, we'd discovered, doesn't love you like your family loves you. -- Louis Zamperini

August  2020

Family is not an important thing. It's everything.

                             ~~ Michael J. Fox

VOLK 13.jpeg


        Front row:  Walter, Dorothy,Paul, Harry

                     The 13 Volk Children

Mama and Ta.jpeg

Mama and Ta Volk