Happy Birthday To Me

September 17th is the 4th most popular day to have a birthday. I happen to be amongst those that share this honor. And as of today (technically yesterday now) I am two decades old.


My Dad and I 20 years ago

I am no longer a teenager. That’s pretty hard for me to wrap my mind around.

It was still a fairly typical day, with the exception of having a few extra Facebook notifications and text messages. Generally, I just get messages from my mom, so I am not sure that my cellphone was quite ready for all of the extra activity today. I am going to have to charge my phone tonight, which is not a very common occurrence now that I don’t have my iPhone.

I did text my mom and ask what time I was born. She couldn’t remember, which didn’t surprise me considering she forgot about my birthday when I turned 15. I like giving her a hard time for that… In her defense, she didn’t forget all day, she just didn’t remember right away. That is part of the reason why “Sixteen Candles” is one of my favorite movies. I can relate to Molly Ringwald’s character, except for fact that I don’t use profanity and I have never had a guy stare longing into my eyes, while sitting on a dining room table with a cake in between us. For those who haven’t seen the movie “Sixteen Candles” and need a visual aide, here you go….


The biggest highlight of my day was having my Mammy and Pappy (my mom’s dad and mom) call me to wish me a happy birthday. My grandma is such a cute, tiny little lady and has a really big heart. My grandpa, who had a stroke about 20 years ago and can’t always get out the exact words he wants to say, sang “Happy Birthday” to me. I am pretty sure that is his second favorite song behind “Jesus, Jesus, Jesus.” He even was able to get my name in there, which is a huge deal considering that Mallory is a pretty hard name for him to say! That was the first time I have ever heard him say my name without having someone sound it out for him. Generally I am either “Little Man” or “**Insert Year in School Here**” (for example, this year I am “Sophomore”).


Marion Francis Grider (AKA Pappy)

In case you are dying to know exactly what I did on my Birthday, or any other big events of the day, here you go:

I got up surprisingly early (shortly before 7 o’clock!) to go swim laps at the CoRec with my friend, Zack. It was a really great way to get my day going. I usually just roll out of bed last minute in the morning, and rush frantically around to get ready in under 5 minutes. So today was a nice change of pace. I got to relax my mind with some laps and watch the sun slowly rise outside the giant windows. Since I didn’t have class until 10:30 today, I was able to go back to the room and eat a bowl of Special K Red Berries Cereal, which is currently my favorite cereal. I even washed dishes. Granted, this was only because I needed to wash out my french press in order to make myself more coffee.

Wednesdays aren’t bad for me class-wise, since I only have three classes and I even have time to get lunch! My professor also talked about bacteriophages in my Cell Biology class, which is my favorite thing to learn about. I don’t even know how to explain it… it’s just another weird quirk about me. I did have to go back to open lab for microbiology and then went to a help session for micro from 7-8:30, but I had nothing better to do, so I didn’t mind too much.

I was able to make it to a coffee shop with Emily Strack, who is just an awesome person. We talked and studied and drank some expensive coffee, and it was a fantastic time! She gave me the prettiest mug I have ever seen, and I am probably going to use it in the morning to drink my black coffee.

I ended my day by watching a movie. I am more and more becoming a huge movie watcher. I especially enjoy 80’s movies, which most normal people don’t. Therefore, I end up watching quite a few movies by myself.

The other genre of movie I frequently watch is “Psychological Thrillers.” They are the ones that are often scary and/or exciting, and once you get to the end, everything makes sense. Fortunately, my friend Kaelan also enjoys these movies, so we watch a lot of them together. And tonight, this was the type I went with.

As far as days of the week go, Wednesday is a pretty inconvenient day to have a birthday. (Becca, if you are reading this, yes I know I can’t complain too much, since my birthday isn’t on Christmas). I extended the invitation to several people to watch “House at the End of the Street” with Kaelan and I for my birthday.

Out of those invited, no one came. I am not trying to evoke pity. I think it is hilarious, which is why I am writing about it. Kaelan and I got some really good laughs and pictures of me pouting out of the situation. We hooked my laptop up to the TV to stream the movie from Netflix. At the beginning, the time bar was showing on the screen, and it was really bugging me. I asked Kaelan if he could make it go away, which he did, while also making the comment, “Ask and you shall receive, unless you are asking people to come to your party, in which case you won’t.”

Despite the lack of people at my birthday celebration, it was still a great night. When I left to go back to my dorm, I even made a friend! I pressed the down button on the elevator and as the door opened, someone started stepping out. I am a very jumpy person to begin with. But since I had just gotten done watching a scary movie, my mind was convinced that it was Carrie Ann coming out of the elevator to get me. I jumped. As it turns out, the guy coming out of the elevator was not getting out to hurt me, he just accidentally started getting out on the fourth floor rather than the third floor where he lives. I apologized for startling him by me being startled. I told him that I am one of the jumpiest people he will ever meet, and it didn’t help that I just watched a scary movie. He asked which move; I told him, and he goes “Yep! That will do it!”

So yeah… that was my pretty standard day. But it was still a really great day, and I wouldn’t trade any part of it (except maybe being enrolled in Microbiology).

I appreciate everyone’s birthday wishes!

Rain Drops Keep Falling

I am not a fan of storms, but I don’t mind rain! I would rather it rain than be super hot… I get grumpy in the heat. It’s probably a good thing that I like rain, seeing as though I will be spending next semester in Ireland.

Rainy days relax me. I always just feel like curling up and watching a movie and maybe drinking some hot tea. That’s not really an option for me today, since I have to go to class.

But fortunately, I enjoy walking in the rain too. It is peaceful to me, because as everyone else is rushing around with their umbrellas, I just take my time and enjoy the rain falling down. I guess this makes me a pluviophile.


Speaking of umbrellas,  those are pretty much a useless invention at Purdue. A good majority of umbrellas flip inside out at some point. I have experienced this awkward moment myself, and that’s why I prefer to wear a rain jacket. Or occasionally, on days like today when I forget my jacket and don’t want to walk back up to the third floor to get it, I just go on without anything. Since I don’t care how my hair or clothes look, this isn’t a problem for me.

The only downside to not having an umbrella or coming across puddles without my rain boots on, is that my shoes get wet. Wet tennis shoes is one of my biggest pet peeves. I just can’t even handle it.


People probably feel sorry for me as I walk around campus not equipped for the weather. Funny story! Last semester, I was walking from the Physics building to Stewart cooperative house where I was living. If you are unfamiliar with Purdue’s geography, that is no more than a 5 minutes walk. It just depends on if your timing matches up with the crosswalk signs. It was raining, and I unsurprisingly didn’t have an umbrella or rain jacket. Out of nowhere, a guy in a suit carrying an umbrella comes up to me and says “Here, I don’t want you to have to walk out in the rain.” He walked with me to the intersection where he was turning. As we parted ways, he turned around and said “Oh! By the way, my name is Garret.” So Garret, if you happen to be reading this, thank you for making my day and giving me a good story to tell! 

I love random acts of kindness. They warm my heart. I should probably start doing them more for others.


“As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.” ~Isaiah 55: 10-11