This post was written in collaboration with Kirkland’s.

This past week I started my Christmas decorating.

I couldn’t wait another minute.  I’ve been dreaming about decorating this house for Christmas since I put the mirror back in place.

And I started with this step.

This is the step I waited for Santa Claus on.

Each Christmas morning my brothers and sisters and I would tumble out of bed and run downstairs and hang over the banister and make general melee and wait for our parents to open the door to the living room.  Eventually my father would poke his head out from behind the door and announce with glee that in the middle of the night Santa had come.

All the anticipation.

All the joy of the morning.

All of those Christmases started with this step.

And now?

I’m getting it ready for the next generation of Christmas morning melee makers.

Here’s my Christmas beginning.

Here’s my start.


I am so happy.

Here’s my Christmas banister.

I started with a basic Christmas garland.


Nothing fancy.

Look for the most inexpensive garland you can find.

You are totally going to go all Cinderella on it and get it ready for the ball.

I started at the bottom of the stair case next to the newel post and used basic florist wire to attach the garland to the banister.  I looped the garland through the posts at every third post—attaching the garland every foot with florist wire.

It took three strands of garland to loop the entire staircase from top to bottom.

Then I went back and fluffed.

Next, you want to add in different Christmas picks.

Different types of greenery are the key.

Look for cedar and pine and fir picks.  Then using florist wire, attach the picks to the original garland.  I added a pick every six inches on the garland.

Next, I layered in fresh cut magnolia leaves.

I used real magnolia leaves on this display and wired them into the garland with florist wire.

They were placed every 12 to 18″.

Lastly, I layered in ornaments.

I simply threaded them through branches on the garland.

I added polka dot ornaments and red and white ornaments and snowflake ornaments and merry ornaments and….

….and these tiny trucks (that are on sale right now).


I have worked with Kirkland’s for four Christmases in a row and this is the CUTEST YEAR I HAVE EVER SEEN.

Maybe it was shopping for the new house.

Maybe it was the smell of pine in the air.

Maybe it was the stair step.

But just between us—I literally almost had a come apart in the middle of the store.

Here’s what came home with me (and what I’m going back for).

Can we start with these stockings?

They are super affordable and look so high end.

There are actually four different patterns.  There’s a snowman pattern that’s not pictured here.  I bought two of each of these patterns for our family.  Here’s the link to the snowflake and the reindeer and the Christmas tree.

And then?

Just when you thought they couldn’t get any cuter—look at this reindeer stocking bar holder I found online.

I’m going back for this.

(total aside:  I didn’t even know stocking bars were a thing)

There were tons of cute pillows.

I brought this one home with me.

The embroidery on the “Believe” looks super high end and the stuffing is extra fluffy.

I loved this sign.

And this fur pom pom throw.

And this gold reindeer knit pillow.

And this little bit of merry by the front door.

I’ll be back after Thanksgiving with more Christmas decorating.

This was just a little peek because I was so excited.

Until then, if you need me I’ll be on the bottom step….

….waiting for Santa. 🙂

PS  If you checked your mailbox this week, you might this face smiling back at you in the Kirkland’s flyer.

Doesn’t she look like she’s ready for Christmas. 🙂

And here’s a little more holiday inspiration from some of my favorite bloggers:

Mon., Nov. 13:

A Blissful Nest

Seeking Lavender Lane

Tues., Nov. 14:

Christina’s Adventures

Weds., Nov. 15:

My Creative Days

The Creativity Exchange

Whimsy Girl Design

Kristin Jones Blog

Thurs., Nov. 16:

Cherished Bliss

Little House of Four

My Life From Home

Tidbits Blog

Fri., Nov. 17:

On Sutton Place


Wife in Progress

PPS  Come celebrate Christmas with me and Kirkland’s with this fun giveaway for a $500 gift card!

Enter below to win!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

disclaimer:  This post was written in collaboration with Kirkland’s.

All opinions are my own.

Please see my disclosure page for more information.


  1. Image for Rebecca Patterson Rebecca Patterson

    I can so relate to your excitement about moving back to your childhood home. My grandfather built the house I grew up in, and when my parents died, my daughter begged me not to sell their house. So I moved back into my childhood home. I even sleep in my same bedroom. There isn’t a day goes by that I don’t remember something else about growing up in my house. You’ll love living in your childhood home! I know I do! Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. Image for June Gerstner June Gerstner

    OMG that is so gorgeous!!!! I always wanted a wrap around staircase, and for Christmas it's the bees knees! Today being the only day this week that I have no plans, looks like I'm headed to Kirklands...not that I need anything mind you. I guess we're on the same wavelength though because I put a new Christmas garland on the headboard of the master bed yesterday after a quick stop at Home Depot for some zip ties to hold it in place. Christmas is coming! Christmas is coming! YIPPEE!

  3. Image for Peg Peg

    Oh how I love this KariAnne!! I wish there was a Kirkland's in Boston!! I'm going to have to jump on line and create a wish list!! xoxo

  4. Image for Nancy from Slightly Coastal Nancy from Slightly Coastal

    Your banister is looking gorgeous! I so wish I had a banister to decorate. Maybe in the next house. I love the bright pops of red against all that gorgeous woodwork. Stunning! P.S. I didn't know stocking bars were a thing either...I wonder if they come with a side of Martini. Nancy

  5. Image for Carrie Carrie

    Who can spend all afternoon in Kirkland's?? Me, too!!!! Time well spent dreaming. Love the truck, the stockings, the banister! Actually. Thanks for sharing Christmas joy~ there is always room for joy!

  6. Image for Jeannie Jeannie

    You are so sweet, and I don’t even know you, I just read your blog. But I feel like I do know you. Your decorating is lovely, etc. etc.. But it’s YOU that makes what you do so special. Thank you!

  7. Image for Barbara Barbara

    Beautiful! You were meant to bring your sweet family back to your childhood home. I bet they hear lots of stories!! Ya'll will make wonderful new memories. Love all the Kirkland items!! And of course your words:) Happy Thanksgiving.....and then bring on Christmas!

  8. Image for Lynn Mosher Lynn Mosher

    Beautiful, KariAnne! I always wanted a staircase to decorate. Can I leave a suggestion? Tie a big red bow on the newel post! I know Christmas will be soooo lovely for all of you this year. ❤

  9. Image for suzi suzi

    KariAnne, your banister is stunning. i cannot wait to see what you do in other areas of the house. i love kirklands so thank you for the chance at this awesome giveaway. my favorite thing there is the wooden grand entrance plaque. i purchased it this spring and have it hanging in my foyer.

  10. Image for Michelle Michelle

    I just love that you have all those wonderful memories there and that banister is the best I've seen this year! And I love how you added magnolias! I gave my framed magnolia prints to my daughter before I left for Colorado where no magnolias grow. I do miss them -- the trees, not the prints. I was happy my daughter was so thrilled to have the prints. Please allow me to continue to gush...that truck is so adorable, and those stockings do look high end, and have I mentioned I love the window-pane design below the staircase? The banister, the pillows and the Joy sign, all that cuteness makes me almost want to skip Thanksgiving and head straight for Christmas. Not to mention, I'm so over picking all the blond dog hairs out of my old zebra print electric throw I've had on my couch for the past ten years and doesn't even work anymore. It needs to be replaced by that plush looking pompom throw -- it's perfect! And no one will ever see the dog hairs if I skip a day picking them out. ;-) Well, I for one can't wait to see the rest of Christmas come to life there at the new Thistlewood!

  11. Image for Nell Nell

    Love, love, love your beautiful staircase. I have always wanted a home with a staircase to decorate, but I will settle for enjoying others now. What fun to live in your childhood home again!!!

  12. Image for Robin Robin

    I am SO amazed you're back in your childhood home. What a story. You must want to pinch yourself sometimes to see if you're dreaming. I love decorating the banister. I absolutely LOVE those stockings! Thanks for bringing them to our attention.

  13. Image for Lori in Missouri Lori in Missouri

    I will miss having a banister this year! Our new home has a hidden staircase... Thank you for reminding me to look into Kirkland's! I moved away from a big city that had several stores... I need to check out where I can find the closest to my new town. Otherwise, I'll shop online!

  14. Image for Brenda Brenda

    I was at Kirkland's last week and they do have super cute stuff! I love your new staircase! Your new house is lovely.

  15. Image for Karen U Karen U

    Since I'm decorating with red, white, natural, and mercury glass, I love all of the mercury glass candles and hurricanes! Your banister is gorgeous by the way! I can't wait to see the rest! Also, I was so sad when you first announced you were moving! I mean... Thistlwood Farms! But how amazing that you are back in your childhood home! I'm so looking forward to seeing this home transform into your families new (old) home! Yay! Karen

  16. Image for Jan Swisher Jan Swisher

    I love following your blog! I am a great fan also of Kirkland's. I recently bought a couple of their open glass "jar" lanterns with the drop down candle and all of the space below the candle to personalize for each one of the recipients on your Christmas list--and in my own house, I change the items that I place in the lower half of the jar for each season or holiday. However, my favorite item is the retro truck with the Christmas tree lying in the back ornament!!!

  17. Image for Denise Cox Denise Cox

    Your banister is lovely!! I've always loved pretty staircases. I just checked Kirkland's site and the red trucks are out of stock right now. Darn... 😣 I love decorating all year round. If I hadn't become a nurse, I would have tried to become an interior decorator. Take care... Hapoy Thanksgiving!!

  18. Image for Cheryl Foley Cheryl Foley

    Love your staircase! The wire basket side table at would look fantastic next to my reading chair. 😍

  19. Image for Kathy L Kathy L

    I collect nativity sets and I think Kirkland's has a nice selection to choose from at a variety of price points. I especially like the one piece overarching angel nativity scene. I might be adding that to my collection this year!

  20. Image for Kris Kris

    What a perfectly fun way to decorate. I can tell you are enjoying yourself. Just a thought--I've never seen a stocking bar, but I tried the weighted stocking holders in the past. I found that it didn't take much to pull everything down--the stocking holders, stockings, and all. It's probably more of a problem with little kids (or maybe pets) but just be aware that it all may come tumbling down--hopefully not on a little person's head!

  21. Image for Jenny Young Jenny Young

    I have such Christmas fever this year. I'm looking for some things to brighten my front porch & love the board plaques...especially the red Merry Christmas. I also love the many welcome mats.

  22. Image for Mary Kleiner Mary Kleiner

    The ornament with the Christmas tree on top of car just like we do every year to purchase our Christmas tree and get it right up there on top our car roof.

  23. Image for Sherrie Sherrie

    So simple and so pretty! But of course, that's how you roll! I haven't decorated the banister in recent years because floral wire left marks on the wood, so I'm looking for an alternative. I agree, Kirklands has super gorgeous and affordable decor this season. The throw pillows are on my list, as well and the Santa plate holder.

  24. Image for Sherrie Sherrie

    So simple and so pretty! But of course, that's how you roll! I haven't decorated the banister in recent years because floral wire left marks on the wood, so I'm looking for an alternative. I agree, Kirklands has super gorgeous and affordable decor this season. The throw pillows are on my list, as well and the Santa plate holder.

  25. Image for Jennifer Hannah Jennifer Hannah

    I've been following your blog for about 2 years now and I'm loving this new adventure. You've gotten off to such a wonderful start on your childhood home and Christmas decorating. Those little red truck ornaments are adorable!!! I adore the antique brown metal task lamp and would put those in multiple rooms in my home. I can't wait to see the rest of the house as it unfolds.

  26. Image for Kelly W. Kelly W.

    I love the reindeer bar stocking holder! We have a sound bar on our mantel (attractive, I know), so I need this for our stockings!

  27. Image for Celeste at Penultimate Home Celeste at Penultimate Home

    Hubby and I were hanging stockings this year and realized we'll need another stocking holder next year (grand baby), but the mantel is full of stocking holders. How clever is that stocking bar! I agree, who knew there was such a thing and why didn't I think of that?

  28. Image for Melanie Melanie

    You are off to a great start with your banister...can't wait to see the rest of your lovely holiday decorating! And what exciting celebrating you'll be doing in your new home full of memories. I'm loving that little red truck ornament... so versatile!

  29. Image for Babette Babette

    Oh just beautiful KariAnne! I’m starting to get my house organized to start decorating! I would love to decorate with the Seashell Ornament Wreath! Beautiful! Thanks for the giveaway!

  30. Image for Cheryl B Cheryl B

    How pretty is the new 4.5 ft. Pre-Lit Flocked Pine Christmas Tree! Beautiful, medium-sized, and pre-decorated. I think I need 2 - one for my living room and one for my daughter.. I've always dreamed of a flocked tree for Christmas and this one has pine cones and baubles already on it. So very pretty!

  31. Image for Cyndie Cyndie

    That staircase is to die for--love the wood trim detail! And of course, your decorations just make it all the more stunning! It'll be such a special Christmas for all of you, especially with all those sweet memories of your own childhood Christmases. Can't wait to see and read more! Oh, and those gray stockings and that bar stocking holder are crazy cute!

  32. Image for Sherri Gonyier Sherri Gonyier

    I love all the luxurious throws! I miss our Kirklands it closed, my living room lamps are from there from years ago.

  33. Image for Cecilia Cecilia

    Love the staircase! And I agree: Kirklands has some really cute things this year. I love the Winter Cottage LED print. It's so pretty! Looking forward to seeing more of your Christmas decor!

  34. Image for Pamela Smith Pamela Smith

    Your staircase looks so beautiful! I can't wait to see the rest of the house! I love Kirklands too! I really like the Gold Glitter Christmas Wall Plaque. I know just the spot for it! Thanks for the giveaway!

  35. Image for Claudine Claudine

    Omg Karianne!!! The staircase looks stunning!!!! I love your new old house!!!! And I love the products!!! I have to have the Believe pillow and the reindeer bar!!! Who knew??!! I had never seen anything like that!!! Sending you lots of love in the new home ♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️♥️ A heart for each one of you

  36. Image for Barbara Bachus Barbara Bachus

    Why have you complicated my life?? I am at a point where I am "condensing " my Christmas decorations and your post makes me want to adjust my plans..... Love Kirkland's and have a hard time saying no... Thank you for the opportunity!

  37. Image for Lanita Anderson Lanita Anderson

    The banister looks amazing - I love how you added all of the wonderful details to change it up! So pretty...... I had fun perusing the Kirkland's site and looking at all of their Christmas decor (must get to their store soon.....!!) My favorites are the red Christmas lanterns and the galvanized snowflake lanterns (and all of the Christmas pillows, too!!) Thanks for sharing the sneak peek.....can't wait to see more Christmas decor in your new home! Blessings, friend!

  38. Image for Debra Hubbard Debra Hubbard

    Gorgeous! Thank you for breaking it down into easy to do straps. I've only got a small section of banister so usually dont play it up but I may try this year. That deer bar stocking holder is lovely but it's showing sold out online.

  39. Image for Kimberly Kimberly

    I love the brown industrial bar stools at I also love, love, LOVE your Cinderella banister. It is definitely ready for the ball!


    KariAnne, your banister is so pretty -- as are the other Christmas touches you have added! You always do such an amazing job of everything! I always look forward to your posts! Enjoy your gorgeous new home! So nice to be making those wonderful new memories together as a family! Just enjoy each new day! Have a great day! Blessings!

  41. Image for Angie Smith Angie Smith

    I adore Kirkland's. The closest one is 2 hours from me but I'll be shopping tomorrow and Sunday so I'll have to stop in both days. I love all the new Christmas decorations. The galvanized deer Christmas planter is my favorite!

  42. Image for Julia Grayson Julia Grayson

    I love Kirklands! And I love your Christmas banister! I don't have a banister but I'm sure that garland will work on my porch rails!

  43. Image for Marlene Stephenson Marlene Stephenson

    I love your staircase it looks wonderful. I have memories of coming down stairs Christmas mornings and how wonderful it was. We had a step that squeaked, our house was older so maybe yours don't.

  44. Image for Pinky Pinky

    I would DIE if I won!!!!!!!!!!!!! I LOOOOOVE Kirklands! Your staircase looks fabulous. I have almost everything done except my staircase. SOON though!

  45. Image for Cassadra E Cassadra E

    Love the new staircase. Oh what fun. Love that you have such a rich heritage. YOU got me hooked on Kirkland's. I searched high and low for the white bowls you have in your kitchen, and I think they are the sweet olive bowls at Kirkland's. And I bought a whole bunch. I would breeze through the credit if I won.

  46. Image for Gina M Gina M

    I love the Peacock Blue Dylan Carribean Accent Chair! Thanks for the chance to win! wildorchid985 at gmail dot com

  47. Image for Lisa Lisa

    Your staircase garland is adorable. I love the polka dot balls! I do a lighted pine garland with ribbons on my staircase but I like the fullness of yours, so I might add some fresh magnolia to mine this year. Thanks for the idea!

  48. Image for Leslie Watkins Leslie Watkins

    I love garlands and staircases and cars and trucks with trees and THAT STOCKING BAR!! Who knew??!! Love it! and the stair numbers. I can't wait to see more reveal of you settling into that old new home and making wonderful new memories and traditions. I'm sure your Dad is smiling and cheering you on! May this Christmas season be the best for you, sweet friend!!

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