3-Year-Old Brings Her Pet Fish To School In Sippy Cup

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Parents often have crazy tales to tell about their kids. But have you heard the one about a goldfish taken to school in a sippy cup?

Well, sports journalist Connor Hughes has now heard it all after a text exchange with his cousin, who has two young kids. And he tweeted about it.

“Having recently gotten married, @BrieHughes3 & I have started the discussion on having children,” Hughes wrote. “I received this text message from my cousin today and I’m not sure we’re ready.”

He then shared screenshots of the conversation with said cousin, Lauren Von Nessen, which starts with a reference to Xanax — which all parents of young kids might feel the need for at some point or other.

Von Nessen’s 3-year-old Peyton snuck her betta fish, Mermaid, into her plastic sippy cup while mom was distracted. The jig was up at snack time when Peyton drank from the cup, having forgotten she’d put the fish inside. A teacher noticed the fish in the cup. Luckily Mermaid survived the unplanned field trip. And Hughes’ tweet went viral.

“Today” Parents got the scoop on how Peyton used her drink cup to gather up Mermaid from her tank. Von Nessen had been suspicious about what her daughter was doing by the fish tank when the 3-year-old told her to stay away that morning after feeding her pet. Von Nessen saw fish food on the ground and thought Peyton was just worried about having spilled.

However, when Peyton’s preschool director called Von Nessen to ask if she knew her daughter had smuggled a fish into school, she was shocked.

“I was mortified. I didn’t know what to say,” she told “Today” Parents. Von Nessen also told BuzzFeed that when she asked the preschool director if this had happened before, she said it was a first.

Hughes for his part thought the story was hilarious, as did his wife, and asked Von Nessen if he could reshare.

“I lost it. So good,” he posted to Twitter about his reaction to the news.

Peyton received a talk about what’s appropriate to bring to school and the fish tank’s lid was duct-taped shut. Mermaid was just fine after all the excitement. Peyton, who claimed she smuggled the fish to school because she loved Mermaid “so much,” had even remembered to add food to her sippy cup for the journey.

Based on Von Nessen’s 2019 Facebook profile picture, it looks like Peyton has been a bit of a handful since she was a little tyke.

Thankfully she was able to use those same hands to screw her sippy cup lid on well or this Mermaid tale might have had a not-as-happy ending.

Have your children ever done anything as wild as this?