As I’ve noted previously, Joanna has a problem with the whole “beauty thing.” So do I, in some ways. For example, I’m troubled by the number of women’s photos that I see on Facebook where the overwhelming majority of responses are something like, “so pretty,” or “beautiful.” However accurate the responses, they seem to be reflections of what I consider to be distorted values — and of a “selfie” generation that spends too much time fishing for compliments based on looks.

Still, my wife is and always has been beautiful — inside as well as outside. So to paraphrase Minnie Riperton, loving Joanna is easy, because she’s beautiful. The song “Lovin’ You” (complete with Riperton’s impressive vocal range and the sound of birds) also goes deeper than Facebook photo appearances, particularly expressing my feelings with this verse:

Stay with me while we grow old
And we will live each day in springtime
Cause lovin’ you has made my life so beautiful
And every day my life is  filled with lovin’ you

To repeat, not only is my wife beautiful but she has also made the rest of my life beautiful. And even at this time of year, we try to find ways to “live each day in springtime.”

Today probably far fewer people know Riperton than know her daughter, and in some versions of the song (including the one below, if you pay close attention) the singer repeats the word “Maya” as a tribute to her young daughter — Maya Rudolph. Riperton only had this one hit and never got to grow old with anyone, dying of breast cancer at age 31. Her short life serves as a reminder of one of the reasons for this blog: We never know how long we have, or what we might leave behind.

“Lovin’ You” lyrics here, with video below.

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