The Compact Disc Situation

Four months before we got married, I packed all of my stuff in a Penske truck and moved to Georgia. When I got to my new home, we mix and mingled our things—books, DVDs, CDs, etc., and promised we’d organized them later. 
Over the past year and a half I managed to organize our DVDs and separate my chick-lit from his sci-fi books, but our CDs kept growing and growing and getting more and more disorganized. 
I really thought I had a better “before” photo, but it turns out this is it. (picture from the Newlywed Map post)

We had so many that they took over an entire bookcase and then overflowed into other rooms of our house and even into our garage. They were so out of order: Hanson was sitting next to The Who, and Sarah Bareilles was wedged between AC/DC and Neil Diamond. We clearly had a problem, but I didn’t want to have to do the boring and tedious job on my own! “Organize CDs” has been on my to-do list since I found out we were moving, but I kept finding other things to do besides alphabetizing our CDs. 

Random CDs we found without a home (i.e. case)

Luckily, my friend Jen came to my rescue and helped me alphabetize all the albums one morning. Surprisingly, it only took an hour to get them in order. It turns out, though, that alphabetizing them was only step one in the organizational process.

This is about 1/4 of them—totally forgot to take a picture of all of them.

Love, love, love these binders
To save space, my husband bought several binders for all the CDs to go into, so the next steps involved taking each individual CD out of its case, along with the liner note, and placing it into the new binder. My husband slipped the albums into their sleeves alphabetically (leaving spaces here and there for new CDs), and I was in charge of keeping the liner notes alphabetical. I also kept the now-empty cases alphabetized in case we still want them later (they’re going into storage while we’re gone). 

Also about 1/4 of them.

It took a decent amount of time to finish the project, but now that it’s over I’m so glad we did it. We took several rows of CDs and fit them into five binders! Now we have an entire empty bookcase we can use for something else when we move, not to mention that we can easily find CDs now.

I realize this sounds a little over the top, but having them organized will be so much nicer in the long run. Actually, if you think this is silly, you should see what I did with my closet
Do you find yourself doing any sort of crazy cleaning before you move?


  1. I LOVE that you still have CDs. I don't think I've bought one since the early 2000s and most of mine are ruined. What a great organizational task, it'll make moving a lot easier!

  2. I LOVE that you still have CDs. I don't think I've bought one since the early 2000s and most of mine are ruined. What a great organizational task, it'll make moving a lot easier!

  3. @Hannah: not only do we still have them, but we keep buying them, too! My husband loves having the actual CD, so we listen to them at home more than using iTunes!

  4. We have a couple of small binders (good to toss in the car for road trips) but I like your big binders. Where'd you get them?

    Originally, I had the idea to categorize my CDs by genre, and alphabetize them within each, but that was too complicated.

  5. Why not buy a small sized exteranal hard drive you can find a 500 GB for about $100 and rip all you CD's as MP3. The drive will weigh less than the CD's. Store the CD's here, take the drive and re-burn a CD if you want it as a CD vs MP3.

  6. @LaDonna Rae, as I mentioned above in reply to Hannah, we really like listening to the actual CD. We already have them burned to an external hard drive, but this allows us to save space when keeping the actual CDs.

  7. I'm pretty sure I threw all my CD's away. haha They annoy me!

    I'm glad you've got them all sorted and ready to go! 🙂

  8. Nice job with the CDs! I read your article about hangers and let me tell you from my very recent firsthand experience…purge your closet one more time before you guys head to Italy!! The hubby and I just moved into our 1400 sq ft, closet-less apartment in Germany and I'm completely dumbfounded at how we ended up with so many clothes and so many hangers!!! I purged our closets TWICE before leaving and it still wasn't enough. I've got two boxes of clothes to donate to the thrift store on base and two boxes of hangers to recycle!! I obviously have a shopping problem that I need to contain.

    So, my advice, purge one more time for good measure. My poor husband is suffering with only one wardrobe, but he so graciously gave me two and they're stuffed full (thank goodness for the military loaning you these things, although they are HIDEOUS!). I've got a post coming about it soon. Good luck to you my friend! Hope you won't end up swimming in a sea of boxes AND hangers like I did! 🙂

  9. Great job!! My husband is so crazy about his music and his CDs that he would never allow me to organize them. However, I'm the same way about my books and movies. He doesn't touch! LOL! I'm glad you two were able to find something that works for you AND you don't have to worry about shipping 20 boxes of CDs!

  10. That rocks as a CD storage solution. Would be awesome not to have about six piles to sift through every time I wanted to find something in particular. Thanks for the suggestion.

    Best wishes for your move,


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