It seems like forever ago that Garrett started begging for a pet.
"You have a dog and a cat," I told him.
"But I really want my own pet that I take care of," he'd replied.
We kept saying no.
Over the summer, Garrett started going through a really annoying phase of sleeping in his room for a few hours and then sneaking into our room and finishing the night on the floor. It didn't matter what we did, we could not get him to stay in his own bed.
We treated the situation as tenderly as we could since both Troy and I were afraid of our own rooms at one point or another when we were kids. Still, it was something we wanted to try to curb.
We implemented a system where he would earn points by staying in his bed. For each point he got to put a sticker on that date on the calendar. When he reached a certain number he would get the reward he was working for.
The first reward was for three nights of staying in his bed. He earned a candy pop that he'd been eyeing.
After that he had to go ten days but the prize was a trip to Leatherby's for ice cream.
Then he asked for a pet. A fish to be exact. I was pretty thrilled that all he asked for was a fish. He didn't ask for a three-toed sloth or a python or a wildebeest, thankfully. Troy and I talked about it and decided that if he could stay in his bed forever or, like, two months, he could earn a fish.
With about two weeks left, I bought the bowl, the rocks, a net and the plant (for $8) and set them up. He just had to wait for the fish to be in it. When we got home from our recent trip we went to the pet store.
For twelve dollars we purchased the fish, the water drops, the food, and a small thermometer. All in all a pretty cheap pet since the food and water drops will last longer than the fish. (Although my betta in college, a one Moby Dick, lived forever so who knows...)
Meet Garrett's very own fish, Peter the Betta.
And of course Peter the Betta is a male. Of course he is. Because if anything else with estrogen came into our house, there's no telling what might happen.