In The News
Local business owner graces RNC banner
Medina resident's face can be seen on Superior Avenue
By ALLISON WOOD
Therese Andjeski, of Medina, is one of 50 area residents whose face will appear on banners in downtown Cleveland during the Republican National Convention. Hers can be seen on Superior Avenue near the Cleveland Public Library.
CLEVELAND – The face of Medina resident and business owner will be Theresa Andjeski graces a banner displayed downtown greeting guests to the Republican National Convention later this month.
Andjeski, who owns Cluttered Solutions, a professional organizing business, said she heard on the radio about a local casting call to get on a banner in late April and went down by herself one morning and got her picture taken.
Her panel can be seen on Superior Avenue in front of the original Cleveland Public Library building. A total of 50 area residents were chosen altogether and their banners are downtown and in other areas such as the University Circle area.
The two-panel banner includes her picture, which gives her first name and occupation of professional organizer, with the second panel welcoming guests to Cleveland.
Andjeski said she was informed she was chosen for the banner, but had to find where it was herself. She found it when she was downtown for the Cavs victory parade riding her bicycle.
"I almost hit the curb," Andjeski said.
Listen to Therese on The Sound of Ideas: Workplace Culture
There are times when work just gets you so frustrated, when co-workers annoy, the boss demands and office gossip and backstabbing make you want to clock out for good. A case of the Mondays can come any day of the week. So, what can we do to make the workplace work better? Today we're thinking outside the cubicle about workplace discord. Instead of backstabbing, how about being honest with co-workers? One local company encourages a "culture of candor." We'll ask why they think complete honesty the best corporate policy. We'll also deal with an issue that sometimes leads to office tension: salary. Should you discuss how much you make with your coworkers? Some say it's bad form, and employers often discourage it, but, especially for women, could it help assure equal pay for equal work? And finally, can a messy desk at work or home lead to a mental block?
-Kendall Hawkins, Senior Manager of talent at Kalypso
-Jim Smith, The Executive Happiness Coach
-Jonathan Timm, Freelance writer
-Therese Andjeski, Founder, Cluttered Solutions
Cleveland professional organizers help declutter homes and lives.
Date Published: Jun 25 2013
by Oseye Boyd
After an insulation project necessitated access to Elizabeth King’s attic and basement, the Lakewood member realized that 30 years of living in the same house had left her with enough accumulated possessions to fill both rooms. “It kind of got out of control,” King says. “I’d start and then I’d say, ‘I don’t know what to do with this stuff.’”
Professional organizers in Northeast Ohio say King’s dilemma represents a common problem. Major life events such as death, divorce or illness interrupt the normal routine and put chores on the back burner, allowing clutter to build up, but everyday household items can also get out of hand over time. Clothing, toys, paper and bulk items can contribute to disarray.
Organizing 4 U owner JoEllen Salkin says she and partner Muffy Kaesberg, both members of the National Association of Professional Organizers, spend a great deal of time filing and organizing papers. “We’re definitely not a paperless society,” says Salkin, owner of the highly rated company in Solon. “People are afraid to throw away certain documents because they’re afraid they’re going to need them one day.” Therese Andjeski, owner of highly rated Cluttered Solutions based in Parma, says she once received a call from a woman who accidentally shredded a $5,000 check while trying to deal with a deluge of papers.
Clients describe feeling paralyzed by the amount of clutter in their homes, Salkin says. “That word ‘overwhelmed’ is what 100 percent of our customers say,” she says. Societal pressure to have the latest model appliance or keep an unwanted gift contributes to clutter, Andjeski adds. Organizing experts say their job entails not only organizing, but teaching sustainable habits that encourage an uncluttered lifestyle.
Andjeski categorizes clutter into four groups. Atmosphere clutter includes items like candles and potpourri, while general clutter includes everyday objects that don’t belong anywhere, such as keys. Sentimental clutter comprises trophies, or in the case of one of Andjeski’s clients, the dress she wore on the first date with her husband. Someday clutter includes a lamp awaiting repair. She asks clients the following questions: Do I use it? Does it bring value to my life? Do I enjoy it? Can I live without it? “Sometimes we need someone to hold our hand for that,” Andjeski says.
Organizing 4 U charges $55 an hour, or $110 if both Salkin and Kaesberg are needed. Andjeski charges $50 for an initial consultation in which she creates a blueprint and cost estimate for each job, detailing needed items, such as containers, and the time it will take. Most jobs focus on finding a place to store items rather than throwing them away, Salkin adds.
King called highly rated Tomorrows Transitions in Akron to help organize and remove items from her home at a cost of $850 for three days of work. Working with Tomorrows Transitions, King helped sort through and decide the fate of various items crowding her home, including fabric she kept for future sewing projects and items from her husband’s book, toy and sports collections. “It was finally making a definite decision to get rid of stuff,” King says. “It was great.”
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Reporter Oseye Boyd enjoys writing articles for Angie’s List that educate members on how to make optimum use of their hard-earned dollars by finding quality contractors. She covers a wide range of topics including handymen, concrete pouring and repair, and pest control, and she puts her journalism skills to use most when hunting down unscrupulous contractors.
Cluttered Solutions has keys to living an organized life
By Ken Baka, Sun News
March 30, 2010, 8:29AM
If household clutter this spring makes you feel blue, open those doors to haul it out.
You know what that darned stuff is: old magazines, sports trophies, greasy glassware in the corner of cabinets and shoes and clothes not worn.
Getting rid of clutter is a key to living an organized life, Therese Andjeski, 53, of Parma, said.
Andjeski teaches a community-education course at Valley Forge High School that attracted about 10 women, some with toddlers, others with teens, still others whose households are newly empty of children.
She believes she has a natural ability to be organized. She discovered the ability as a child. She helped schoolmates organize bedrooms. She helped clean cupboards of her parents’ home on South Canterbury Road.
Her interest was "weird" for a child, she admits, jokingly.
As an adult, she ran a 12-person business that cleaned houses, offices and boats. After 12 years, she closed the business. Now she operates Cluttered Solutions, which declutters houses. Services include shelving and closet systems. Helping her are two handymen. If the decluttered house reveals bugs, she calls on her husband of 30 years, Raymond, for pest control.
Parma schools provided her course in March after she called the school district. Students paid $49 for four classes. But Andjeski is happy to share her tips freely here on what she calls "mental clutter and how to unstuff" lives.
• Self-management. That means learning how to keep tidy by quickly picking up clothes or washing dishes.
• Family management. That means enlisting each person in the family in a team devoted to being tidy.
• Mail management. Open mail in front of a waste pail. Create a file folder into which mail goes for each family member. Keep a weekly log of things to do. Or buy 3-by-5-foot cardboard portfolio carriers into which goes paperwork.
Andjeski said children might like to decorate that cardboard portfolio in a personal style.
• Space management. That involves inserting dividers in drawers or storing soft items, such as sweaters, in "space bags" that are vacuum-packed with the use of a vacuum cleaner.
"All that stuff slides right under the bed," Andjeski said.
Andjeski, who lives in a bungalow on Southington Drive, asserts she is so tidy that nothing is presently under her bed.
She admits, however, to having a junk drawer. She’s wont to toss items down basement stairs for decluttering later, and she occasionally won’t make the bed.
Before Andjeski accepts a job, she visits the house. She finds out how long the house has looked that way and what owners want it to look like. A visit costs $50. She turns down jobs if the person doesn’t want to get rid of what she considers to be "overflow."
By the way, when a person considers whether to save an item or get rid of it, Andjeski offers this rule: "If you could use it, you should keep it. If not, donate it."
She defines clutter as anything that "doesn’t enhance your life." By enhance, she means anything that brings you joy.
"If it’s something you move from room to room, that doesn’t enhance your life."
She ascribes to the rule of three "D"s: donate, distribute or dump.
What isn’t thrown out or donated finds a new home in the house.
If she takes a job, she charges $35 to $60 an hour. Cost depends on how labor-intensive her task will be and whether the person helps her.
Her task often involves stuffing bags and hauling bags to cars. She hauls bags herself.
"I get dirty. I wear gloves," she said. "Sometimes I wear masks."
What she doesn’t dump, she gives to second-hand shops, missions or other places, complete with a receipt for the owner. Books might go to a library, costumes to a community theater.
"You try to send things off in a direction where people will be blessed by it," she said.
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