I am sharing very sad news today. As many of you have already heard, our dear friend Ike (Suzy Eisenhauer) of Ike's Art, Ike's World Challenges, and Show Us Your Pussycats Challenges lost her battle with cancer and passed away early Thursday during the night. Since then.....blog posts, FB posts, and emails have been showing up expressing what we all feel: grief and loss, but also a huge amount of gratitude for the privilege of knowing Ike, even if it was only on-line.
Ike had the beautiful gift of making everyone feel special and valued. I do not use digital images very much (rather, hardly at all!). But anytime I used her artwork in a card or project she made me feel like a million dollars with her words of appreciation.....(even though my cards were never all that great!)
She was a loyal supporter of the Cat Lovers Hops here on my blog. She sponsored our Hops from the very beginning in 2015 and graciously designed special sets of images especially for the Hop each year until she was too ill to do it. I featured those images each year and designated Ike's Art as the official sponsor for the Daily Games feature on the Hop. She was a dearly loved member of our Cat Lovers Hop family and it won't be the same without her!
She was a cat lover through and through and that's probably how she and I first got to know each other. I recruited her to help me launch the first Cat Lovers Hop by submitting a project.....and then I couldn't get rid of her!! Ha. She stuck around and became part of the backbone of the Hops. (What in the world are we going to do now???)
Ike was always positive and cheery in her outlook. She spread joy and humor wherever she went. Her emails and FB posts were often sprinkled with funny memes and wry humor. Most times you would never guess she was suffering so intensely.
She only mentioned occasionally that she was ill, but one could tell things were not good at all. She courageously dealt with all life threw at her, including the nasty effects of chemo. So it was a huge surprise to receive a package from her several weeks ago. It was a birthday present.....this wonderful crocheted kitty lap afghan. Sooooooooo fun and cute!!
How she managed to make this when she had been ill for so long, I
don't know...but it is something I will always treasure and remember her
by. How very like Ike to generously give of herself with a special
handmade gift. I know that many others have similar tales of the unique and
creative gifts Ike sent "just because".....even with high
postage costs and "donkey mail" clear from Greece!
Ike will live on in the hearts of her family and her many friends around the world. She made a tremendous impact on the papercrafting community and her art will continue to be loved...and used to bring joy to others!
My prayers are with her family and to all those who will miss her dearly. We will always love and remember you, Ike. We are so blessed to have been privileged to know you! 💖💖💖
Beautifully written tribute to Ike. She will be missed by many in the crafting world. RIP Ike.ReplyDelete
When you told me about Ike passing away in your email today, I was shocked and saddened, even though I knew how ill she had been. Her humor and optimism always made her seem invincible, and it doesn't seem possible that she is gone. She was always so generous with her freebie digis, and her cat images captured the true essence of a cat so perfectly. Your sweet little kitty lap afghan brings both a smile and tears as I imagine it having made it from Ike's hands to your home. I only hope that she knew the positive impact she had on so many crafters, and how much she will be missed.ReplyDelete
Thank you so much for sharing this! I was so sad to hear that she had passed! My thoughts are with her family and friends! She brought so much happiness to the crafty community online. She left such kind and sweet comments on my posts and shared her wonderful art with me. I will miss her! Thank you for sharing the pic of the blanket she made you; that just shows what a sweet and thoughtful person she was. Thank you for sharing this again; and you are right, we are blessed that we got to know a bit of her!ReplyDelete
Such a beautiful tribute to Ike. I saw another post early this morning on Facebook about her passing. So sad. My heartfelt condolences go out to her family. She was a very sweet and generous person, and will definitely be missed.ReplyDelete
None of you good people know me although you may be vaguely aware of me, I am Sue's husband, Andy. I can confirm everything that Janis has posted as being true. She was an amazing lady, you had to meet her in person to realise just how awesome she was. The fact that she sent a crochet cat afghan is no surprise, that is what she would do. Among all her other art interests she recently (within the last couple of years) got into quilting. She spent an entire fortnight making a huge quilt of humorous looking cartoon seagulls, she worked on it 8 hours a day for the entire fortnight. it then cost her a considerable sum to post it. I asked her why she was doing it, was it a commission or a birthday present, she said no. She was just doing it because she knew one of her craft friends liked seagulls and she knew it would make her smile. That was just how she was.ReplyDelete
It is comforting to know how well she was regarded in the crafting community, I know she will be greatly missed.
Andy, I am so honored that you took the time to write a comment on my post. Thank you for the personal glimpses you gave us and to Mia on her comment. There are so many amazing things most of us didn't know about Ike, but we loved her for all the beautiful ways she touched our lives.Delete
My deepest condolences to you and your family in the loss of your dear Sue. May peace and comfort be yours through this difficult time.
Dear Janis, all the crafting community will miss Sue. She was a very kind person and I am deeply sorry that I did not have the chance to get to know her in person. I live in Athens, she lived in a lovely greek island, Kalymnos, and we never had the chance to meet, but we would certainly do it in the future. Unfortunately death came early and we all missed a great blogging friend. Her gifts for you, the crochet afghan, is beautiful. And now I feel even more touched as Andy talked above for a quilt with seagulls that Sue sent as a gift to a friend. Well, I am the friend. I was so lucky to receive the beautiful seagulls guilt. Being her friend, and a member on her DT, makes me feel proud. I will make a tribute post for Sue on March 3 on my blog. March 3 would be the day for the next Ike's challenge. So this is the day I chose to make a post for her on my blog. Hope you will visit me then. Hugs, sweetie. I understand that the Cat hop will not be the same without Sue, but we will all be here to support it.ReplyDelete
Hi, Mia. Andy again. I didn't even know who she made the seagull quilt for but I can assure you that if you like it and it made you smile that would have been enough for Sue. If she could lighten somebody else's load and bring them some happiness even if only briefly that is all the motivation she needed. A truly unique individual lady. You may or may not know that she was a police officer most of her life, she worked at Tottenham during the riots when a close friend and colleague, Keith Blakelock was hacked to pieces by a baying mob. She ended up working on domestic violence, something she had herself suffered from in a previous relationship. She would think nothing of working 4,5,6 hours overtime for no additional pay in order to help somebody in need.Delete
If only the world had more Ikes we would all be in a much better place.
Andy, we need more Ikes in this strange world.Delete
No, I did not know her previous job, but I understand how much she loved helping people.
Her quilt made me dancing! I simply love it! I still have the messages I changed with Sue when I got it:
Sue, 23 Oct 2021: "Thank you very much for my lovely gifts which I receive yesterday. The fabrics are so very pretty. Your hand made crochet and zip pouch are amazing. You are very clever.It was so kind of you to think of me."
Me, same day: "I love these coincidences!!! Yesterday I received your GORGEOUS patchwork with the sea gulls.
A HUGE HUGE HUGE THANK YOU, my dear friend. I LLLLLLLLLLOVE IT. It is the best gift I have ever received from a blogging friend. I thank you with all my heart."
Sue, 24/10/2021: "Oh, that's amazing - I am so pleased it arrived. I make it so you can put it on the wall as picture maybe 😺 I remember you make comment that you love Seagulls.😺😺😺".
So, yes Andy, she sent to me because she new it could made me smile. She was a very kind person. My deepest condolences.
So sad to hear of this news. But she is no longer suffering and is Home. What a beautifully written tribute to Ike and such a lovely treasure she sent you! I know you will smile with sweet remembrance every time you look at it. So special! Hugs, my friend. Becca xoxoReplyDelete
Thank you for this wonderful tribute in memory of Ike and for sharing the beautiful afghan she lovingly made for you. She was such a sweet, caring, and generous person. I have been so sad since I found out yesterday and ended up crying again after I read your post and her husband's comments. Truly a special lady that I will miss dearly. Rest in peace, dear Ike.ReplyDelete
Janis, thank you for lifting my heavy heart with this wonderful tribute to our dear friend Ike. You have totally captured her and expressed how much we all loved her. She will truly be missed. Comforting hugs, DarnellReplyDelete
we will miss her... Im heartbroken. I'm still crying..ReplyDelete
She was the best person in the world..
Thanks for letting us know. She will be missed. The afghan is so cute and I know you will treasure it.ReplyDelete
Beautiful piece so sad the reason I sure she will be missed ....LisReplyDelete
Such sad news . Heartfelt sympathies to all who knew and loved her.ReplyDelete
This post made me smile, Sue really did make you feel special but also encouraged and helped you be yourself. She made me laugh when stresed, help me design the perfect murder, pushed my love of dark crafting and then sent me very own rainbow coloured snail when I became absolutely obsessed with them. She taught me the all about snails and lots of things but most of all the importance of a friendship where you can be yourself. I know how much she lvoed her family and even from a written word could tell how proud she is/was of them. She will be deeply missed but I also know at this point if it was anyone else who'd gone and we were talking she'd say something about worms eating them to make me laugh so the tears are coupled with happy memories too. If there's anything I can do for any of you please let me know.ReplyDelete
Such a beautiful tribute to Ike, Janis. She was a beautiful, kind, generous soul and she'll be missed by all who had the privilege to know her. Condolences to her family and friends at this sad time.ReplyDelete
Thank you for this wonderful tribute in memory of Ike.ReplyDelete
Condolences to her family and friends at this sad time.
Beautiful piece so sad the reasonReplyDelete
Your blog says so much of what we are all feeling, Janis! Hi, Andy! Thank you for taking the time to offer us all comfort during this enormous time of sadness for you and your family! Ike did always make me feel like I had created a masterpiece when she saw my projects using her images posted whether or not it was for her team or challenge! My stuff has always been so so but she always made me feel proud of what I had created. I think everyone on her design team knew that if you couldn't make a post she never ever made you feel bad about yourself for doing so. She would reply kindly and check up on you to make sure whatever your crisis was at the time hadn't consumed you. She gave love, laughter and happiness! The world certainly needs a lot more Ikes!ReplyDelete