Nelly landed at Jefferson Elementary
to Encourage Young Readers

Author Nancy Monson and Illustrator Sarah Peterson had a wonderful time last night working with children from Jefferson Elementary School in Rochester, MN. They were there to help encourage young readers. During the evening the kids got to “Play with Nelly” during an illustration game. Here’s the Nelly they came up with:

Jefferson Elementary's Nelly

Thank you for being such great kids!

Remember what Nelly says: “I THINK I CAN!”


Familiy Fun Night at
Fillmore Central Elementary

I had an absolutely wonderful time at Fillmore Central Elementary School’s Family Fun night last night with over 120 kids and adult in attendance.  I was able to share a little about how Nelly came to life though illustrations.  I showed all the children what Nelly started as & how she developed over time.  It was really fun to share my creative process with the kids that were there.  It was even more fun, however, to let them be active participants in their own creative process.  The kids were split into two groups and during the first half of my time with them I allowed the kids to decide how to change/modify Nelly.

Here’s what both groups started with:

Playing with Nelly - the original


And here’s what they came up with.

First, the first groups Nelly,

Nelly modified by the first group


and then the second Group’s Nelly.

Nelly modified by the 2nd group

I just LOVE how different the two groups results are.  Thank you for having me to your school. I hope you had as much fun learning about Nelly as I had sharing her with you.

— Sarah Peterson, Illustrator




Nelly’s Summer Adventures

After starting her big adventure Nelly found she was getting a little tired, so she decided to take the beautiful summer and play.  She went fishing up in northern Minnesota, relaxed on a Pickerel Lake in South Dakota, and she even tried some of the roller coasters and mini-donuts at Valley Fair! What a great summer. Now, Nelly is back & ready for a great school year motivating kids to get reading!  Books can take you so many places. Make a fun list (like Nelly did) to discover your interests and find books about them. Get flying with books!!  Have fun and enjoy !!


Book Signing in Lanesboro MN
during Rhubarb Fest

Author Nancy Monson and Illustrator Sarah Peterson will be on hand to sign copies of “Get Out of the Nest, Nelly!” during Lanesboro’s Rhubarb Festival this Saturday June 2nd. Monson and Peterson will be at Pedal Pushers Cafe from 10:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. with story times happening at 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. Stop by for a great time!

If you haven’t gotten your copy yet the book is available in Lanesboro at Potiche Pottery in Gift and Scenic Valley Winery. Copies of the book are also available at the Rochester and Mankato Barnes & Noble stores or you can purchase one here on this site. Author and Illustrator will have books on hand if you would like to purchase yours the day of the event.


Nelly makes news in Rochester, MN

We are excited to report that Nelly has made the Local section of the Rochester Post Bulletin. If you are interested in knowing how this book came about you can read all about. Here is an excerpt from the article. Please click the link at the end if you’d like to read the rest.

Author, photographer team up for life adventure

Posted: May 30, 2012, 6:39 am By Laura Horihan

The Post-Bulletin, Rochester MN


LANESBORO — Photographer and designer Sarah Peterson, of Lanesboro, entered a Rochester Barnes and Noble bookstore about a year ago with plans to create a coffee table book containing photos of southeast Minnesota’s Bluff Country.

A day without her children meant she could browse similar books and do a little research at her own pace. While there, she asked an employee what she would need to do to get her book on the store’s shelves.

That’s when she met the store’s community resource manager, Nancy (Kreyer Staudt) Monson.

Monson gave her the information she needed to get started, but in passing she mentioned how much she’d always wanted to publish a book herself. (click for full article)



Summer Reading: A great way to encourage a love of reading!

Summer Reading | Encourage a love of readingSummer is a prime time to read. Students who read over the summer significantly improve their reading skills. Inspiring love and joy in reading is perhaps the greatest gift we can give. Motivate children to find books of interest to them. The more they read, the more they learn.

We recommend  jump-starting children with our new book, “Get Out of the Nest, Nelly!” This book eliminates excuses and at the end of the book students can fill out a fun list that identifies their interests.  Finding one’s passion is truly a key to get kids interested in reading. This book encourages them to think about fun things they want to learn and do.

Happy Summer Reading With a Child!

Get Out of the Nest, Nelly! is Launching {get to know the authors}

Get Out of the nest, Nelly, is a heart felt story about a bird stuck in her nest, afraid to leave. Nelly’s siblings, however, have left the nest and return to tell her about their fun adventures in life. They invite her to join but she can’t overcome her own fears.  Nelly becomes depressed about her situation.  Will she find the courage to launch herself out of the nest and let life’s adventures begin?

Author Nancy Monson is a Master Teacher whose passion is returning joy to the classroom and fun to learning.  Having taught over 30 years, she celebrates kids of all ages as they gather courage and confidence, spread their wings and fly!

Illustrator Sarah Peterson is a photographer and graphic designer who is forever searching for that next adventure. She believes in using each day to the fullest and loves encouraging others to get out of their nest!


Nelly is at the printer!

For all of you who have been diligently following Nelly’s progress we would like you to know that things are getting very, very close. The book is at the printer and will be ready for distribution by the first of May! We can’t wait to share this book with you. If you would like to pre-order a copy of the book for yourself you can click the “buy now” link at the right side of the page. For larger orders please email us at for a payment link.