14 April 2012

I've got a new favorite song ~

A definite highlight of this past year has been having my niece, Leandra, here with us for 10-ish months. So many laughs, kitchen experimentation, dance marathons in the living room, all-age slumber parties in the girls' room... We're so thankful that we've had this amazing time and the opportunity to so intimately be a part of each others' lives.

There have been a few surprises, however. Hopefully she (yeah, Andi) won't be upset that I'm talking about her on our blog... One of those surprises has been that she's got a friend... yeah, a guy friend... it is a Facebook official "relationship..." and his name is Joe. Their friendship has been a treat for our family. A definite second highlight of this year has been getting to know Joe as he's hangin out at our house. (We hope he's enjoyed hanging out with our family, too...  He does say he'd still come to visit even if Andi wasn't here and it was donut Saturday....)

Of course, Elsie Mae and Mary Michelle are convinced he's coming over to visit them. The Jon-man thinks it is so he can challenge Joe to soccer in our sandy front yard. My gang asks, "Can Uncle Joe come over?" even more than they ask if I'll take them to the pool - in this land of 120' heat and common power cuts, that very fact must give you some idea of what a favorite he is! Come to think of it, the kids may actually ask more frequently than Andi does... of course, she's outnumbered 8 to 1! He and Andi are two of my favoritest young people in the world today: they spent a couple of hours scrubbing underneath, behind and all over - cleaning my oven/stove. Now, the oven door offers a better reflection than just about any mirror in the house!

So... what does all this have to do with a new favorite song? I'm getting to that part... albeit slowly. Consider this "blog-post-African-style" - lots of beating around the bush before coming to the point.

I grew up in Oklahoma, and I detested country music. In my opinion, it was a very sad state of affairs that country outnumbered every other type of radio station AND both my swim coach and my gymnastics coach loved country music. Unless we were preparing floor routines for competition, the gymnastics gym always echoed Kenny Rogers, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Oak Ridge Boys... blech! More than once, I'd lift my head out of the water and those same painful notes would filter down to my hears... blech again! I heard a lot more country music than I ever wanted to hear.

Then, right after my high school graduation, my family moved to New England - just a short distance outside of Boston. No radio stations regularly played country music... and  crazy as it sounds, homesickness blossomed into a love affair with country music - I clearly identified that with "home." My previous antipathy quickly morphed to love.

This enjoyment of country western music has continued. You can move the girl out of the country, but guess you can't erase the country out of the girl. Those sappy ballads get me every time! Joe likes country music, too... he's converted Andi and all the kids (my husband, essentially a redneck, well, he was already a fan - especially if a song had to do with pick up trucks or hunting squirrels and deer). So, today, we were all working and cleaning here at the house, and Joe was sharing some of his collection with us.

I heard the following song... at first, I thought it was just another round of nostalgic sentimentality... boy was I wrong. This song may be old news for y'all - but this was the first time I'd every heard it.

Voilà! My new favorite!

Read the lyrics... then there is an amateur concert video below the words, if you are interested in hearing/seeing a partial performance by Josh Turner, as he sings "The Way He Was Raised."

Be sure to comment and let me know what you think!


He always wore those worn out flip-flops
Spent hours in his Daddy's workshop
he loved being on the water
Fishing with His friends
He always listened to the old folks
When they'd tell stories and crack jokes
Didn't talk back to his Mama
When she got onto Him

Oh, that's just the way He was raised
Had to finish all His chores 'fore He could go outside and play
they always went to church that's were he learned how to pray
And that's just the way He was raised

He grew His hair out when He got older
Grew it clear down to His shoulders
Started hanging with the outcasts
When He went off to town
Some called Him a troublemaker
Even some said a lawbreaker
No matter how they talked about Him
He never put nobody down

'Cause that's just the way He was raised
When people start to gossip, He'd just walk away
He always loved his neighbor no matter what they'd say
Oh, that's just the way He was raised

On a cross, on a hill
That long haired boy was killed
All our sins washed away
When He walked out of that grave

Oh, that's just the way He was raised
there's no way we can measure
The sacrifice He made
He knew He had to die
For our debt to be paid
Oh, that's just the way He was raised

It took the hand of God to roll the stone away
And that's just the way He was raised
Yeah, that's just the way He was raised


  1. Replies
    1. i thought it was wonderful... played at least 15 times the other night. sometimes i can exhibit perseveristic tendencies just like some of my students.

  2. Great song! Thanks for the blog post. It's neat to get a glimpse of Joe's life over there from your point of view. Thanks for being such a great family for him to hang out with. We miss him.

    1. I'm sure you do... and when he heads back to the States, our kiddos will miss him a lot, too! Thanks for sharing him!


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