My mother, Linda S. Guilford, taught me to believe in myself and that positive thinking can be the key to happiness.

As a child, I loved to draw, paint and color ... well, just about anything related to art and using my imagination. I remember one day when I was little, I decided to draw a picture on her bedroom wall and proceeded to do so with pencil in hand along the entire length beneath the windows.

When my mother discovered my “masterpiece,” she looked down at my smiling face, gave me a big hug and praised my artist talent, telling me how beautiful it was. This is just one example of how she blessed my life with positive encouragement.

She also loved red roses; they were her favorite. As a little girl, I frequently picked flowers for her (usually the only ones available were the little purple or yellow droopy ones), but when roses were in bloom, I took particular advantage. However, we did not have any roses in our yard, but our neighbor did. ... But no matter what kind of flower I presented my mother, she ... beamed with pleasure and happiness and gave me a big kiss.

My mother passed away the week of Mother’s Day in 2010; I miss her greatly. She was my biggest fan!

Jennifer Dean

Walterboro