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1:25pm

Fri July 29, 2011
Spotlight on Country

Ashton Shepherd: Country Music With Roots

Ashton Shepherd, whose new album is called Where Country Grows.
Danny Clinch Courtesy of MCA Nashville

In these days of downright citified, even glamorous, country music singers, Ashton Shepherd lives the life other country stars just sing about. Her new album, Where Country Grows, is her second, but Shepherd hasn't moved to a big spread outside Nashville. She still lives in Coffeeville, Ala. She sells vegetables out of the back of her pickup truck when she's not on tour.

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1:16pm

Fri July 29, 2011
Culture And Traditions

At 7 Days, Egyptian Babies Mark First Rite Of Passage

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 9:36 am

Israa Saad Diab lifts the cover from her son Hamza's face, while her husband, Ibrahim Muhammad, watches, after the traditional Sebou ceremony in Mansoura, Egypt, on May 27.
Holly Pickett for NPR

In Egypt, survival and the number 7 are inextricably linked. It's on the seventh day that a child's existence is first formally acknowledged to the world in a ritual that dates back to Pharaonic times.

But the ancient tradition — called the Sebou — has taken on new and not always happy turns since a revolution earlier this year ousted longtime President Hosni Mubarak.

Building An Infant's Character

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1:08pm

Fri July 29, 2011
Economy

A Weak Economy Is Good For Military Recruiting

Justin Bock holds his daughter, Lina, at his graduation from basic training earlier this year. Bock decided to enlist in the Navy after both he and his wife, Ashley, were laid off.
Courtesy of the Bocks

The third in a three-part series.

The unemployment rate is high, greater than 9 percent. The military is in the midst of a record streak of recruiting success.

It's not a coincidence. A weak economy is good for the military.

'Sorry We're Not Hiring'

About a year ago, Justin Bock was about to join the Navy. He just didn't know it.

Justin and his wife, Ashley, both had solid jobs. So they bought a house in Martinsburg, W.V.

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1:00pm

Fri July 29, 2011
NPR Story

No Resolution To Debt Ceiling Crisis In Sight

House Republicans huddle behind closed doors seeking votes for Speaker John Boehner's debt ceiling bill, while Senate Democrats move ahead on their own plan, which faces lumbering procedural hurdles. The irony, says President Obama, is that "the two parties are not miles apart." He adds that "the time for putting party first is over."

1:00pm

Fri July 29, 2011
Economy

No Debt Hike? A Hard Choice For Who Gets Paid

If you've ever looked at a stack of bills and realized you owe more money than you have in the bank, you can understand the position the U.S. government will soon be in, if lawmakers don't agree to raise the debt ceiling.

The Obama administration would then face the same decision as any cash-strapped consumer: Who gets paid? And who doesn't?

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