Marissa Hooper’s mom has been on high alert for the past year.
And it’s all Marissa’s fault.
It all started in the summer of 2016 when Marissa, a 21-year-old college student from Texas, was home for the summer. One day, she was hanging out on her parents’ couch with her older sister, Cristina, who no longer lives at home. The sisters were looking at their parents’ vast collection of family photos when Cristina was struck by a question.
“My sister looked over at me and asked if I thought [our parents] went around and looked at all of these pictures when they missed us,” Marissa told HuffPost. “Or if they would even notice if we moved them around.”
And just like that, the mischievous Marissa saw an opportunity to have a little fun with her folks.
She began looking around the house for little objects she could use as costumes and props. Once she had the perfect materials, she grabbed the family’s two-pound Chihuahua, Dixie.
Using Dixie as her model, Marissa then recreated two family photos, one showing her grandmother ...
... And the other showing her sister as a kindergartener.
“I made the pictures similar at first glance,” Marissa told HuffPost. “So they might actually be hard to notice.”
Marissa also notes that her parents have several “big book shelves that take up entire walls” in the Hooper family home. Each is decorated with trinkets and tons of photos, so anything out of the ordinary wouldn’t be noticeable at first glance. (In fact, little Dixie is hiding in plain sight in the image below.)
After Marissa snapped the photos, she waited until her mom, Kathryn, was out of the house and placed the Dixie replicas in front of the original photos.
It took Kathryn two weeks to notice the swap.
“Embarrassingly, she found it while company was over and knew immediately it had to be one of us playing a joke on her,” Marissa said.
“She was showing off some pictures to people who were walking through the house, and was trying to awkwardly hide these pictures because she didn’t want them to think that that’s what she did in her spare time.”
After the guests left, Marissa said that her mom walked around the house closely inspecting every frame.
Kathryn’s been pulling this stunt for about a year.
“I’m convinced she’s paranoid I change something every time I come home,” Marissa said.
Since the college she attends is just a two-hour drive from her parents’ house, she’s home pretty often. But Marissa has restrained herself ― until last week, when she decided to make another Dixie replica.
She used her own high school graduation photo:
This time, though, Kathryn was prepared ― just two days after Marissa switched out the photo, she got this text from her mom:
Naturally, Marissa found the whole thing hilarious and decided to post photos of her Dixie replicas and her mom’s text to Twitter over the weekend.
The post quickly went viral, receiving 73,000 likes and 31,000 retweets.
As for little Dixie, she seems to be a pretty happy participant in the pranks.
“I don’t have to use treats or anything to get her to look at the camera. She’s very good at sitting there and being ready,” Marissa said of the 7-year-old dog. “She’s a natural, what can I say?”
To see more of Dixie, check out her Instagram here.