Sometimes kids get into things they shouldn’t and make a mess. But for one Utah family, their toddler shredded $1,000 in cash—creating one very, very expensive mess. Read on for the story that’s since gone viral.

When parents Ben and Jackee Belnap started saving money to pay their own parents back for University of Utah football season tickets, they never imagined what would happen to their growing envelope filled with cash. When they noticed their secret cash stash has disappeared, they kind of freaked after realizing it was missing—and rightly so. They had no idea that it was so much worse than just missing moolah, however.

As dad Ben started digging through the trash, his wife yelled out that she had found the missing money. “She’s holding the shredder and she says, ‘I think the money is in here,'” Ben told KSL News.

According to Jackee, her two-year-old son Leo knows his way around the shredder. “Leo helps me shred junk mail and just things with our name on it, or important documents we want to get rid of,” she told her local news station.

While the shredded money may look more like confetti than usable bills, not all is lost. As it turns out, the couple may someday get their cash back. The U.S. Department of Treasury’s Bureau of Engraving and Printing redeems mutilated money as a free public service. With 30,000 claims per year (totaling an average of $30 million), this process tends to have some pretty lengthy wait times—but it’s better than being totally out the $1,060 they had saved up.

There might also be some hope from an unlikely source: Dr. Pepper. On Friday, the soda company replied to Ben’s now-viral Twitter post, offering to cover the cost of the tickets: “Sounds like you need a real-life replay @Benbelnap! We know you’re a diehard @Utah_Football fan. We’re the #OfficialDrinkofFans and want to help cover the costs of those tickets. DM us.”

No word on whether Leo got a stern talking to, but at the very least, Jackee conceded that this whole ordeal will “make a great wedding story one day.”

—Erica Loop

Featured Photo: Jelleke Vanooteghem via Unsplash



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