Janice G. Pasteris
Janice Pasteris, age 37, of Madison, died peacefully in her sleep on July 26, 2017.
She was born on February 27, 1980, the daughter of David Pasteris and Gail Sterkel. Janice’s younger brother is William “Will” Pasteris. Janice attended Lake Mills public schools until high school and then transferred to Malcolm Shabaaz High School in Madison, where she flourished in the arts, especially watercolors painting and creative writing. She graduated valedictorian of her class and was awarded a scholarship to attend Beloit College.
As a child, Janice loved the family’s raised bed, organic garden that encircled their home. This began a personal interest in green living and organic food. She would pull an onion out of the ground and take a bite. Her knowledge of plants and flowers increased as she and the garden grew. She did not like cut flowers brought into the house; she preferred to enjoy their beauty where they’d been planted.
In addition, Janice was a very imaginative child and invented her own games. She was a voracious reader which continued into her adult years. As a grade school student, Janice was active in soccer and softball, and she was a regular at the public library. She and her younger brother won first prize in a dress like characters from a book contest with costumes as Alice in Wonderland and the White Rabbit. At home, she liked to bake (muffins, especially), and she adopted stray cats that wandered into the yard. A very bright individual, Janice was always a step ahead when it came to style and innovative ideas. And, she tried to be a friend to everyone.
Janice volunteered as the first intern for the then fledgling KRASS (Kathie Rassmussen Women’s Theatre of Madison), where she helped by reading dozens of plays and wrote short synopses and whether the company should consider pursuing them or not. She was a part of the beginning of KRASS, and they would not be the same without her.
Early into her adult years, Janice became physically disabled and was unable to work or attend college full time. As the years went on, more illnesses intruded on her life, causing her an existence of chronic pain. A believer in Christine Miserandino’s The Spoon Theory “But You Don’t Look Sick,” Janice often referred to how many “spoons” she had for any given day, chore, errand, or activity. She wished individuals were aware that people who didn’t look ill on the outside could be suffering intensely, as she did, on the inside. She rarely had more than two “spoons,” at any given time but loved to spend them going thrift store shopping, if she could. Janice could create Prada-worthy fashion from potpourri and invent sui generis interior decor from rare, estate sale finds.
Janice was preceded in death by her aunt, Terry Pasteris Larson.
An outdoor memorial service will be held Wednesday, 2 August 2017 at 11 a.m. at Natural Path Sanctuary at the Farley Center, the only green burial grounds in the world helping support a farm incubator and peace and justice initiatives. (Attendees are reminded to carpool as parking is extremely limited in and around the Farley Center). There will be walking involved to the gathering place and then up the hill, to the meadow and oak tree.
Janice will be remembered for her beautiful smile, lovely presence, intelligence, style, creativity, sweet laugh, quick wit, love of books, independent nature, love and understanding of cats, thoughtfulness, and deep sensitivity. Janice will be intensely missed by those who loved her and knew her.
“The one thing that you have that nobody else has is you. Your voice, your mind, your story, your vision. So write and draw and build and play and dance and live as only you can.” Neil Gaiman
…And so she did.
In lieu of flowers, you can help to defray the unexpected expenses. Cards and donations may be sent to:Gail Sterkel, 3803 Monona Dr. Apt. 305, Monona, WI. 53714.
Cress Funeral & Cremation Services
3325 East Washington Ave Madison
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