Twice a cancer survivor, Houp has a way of keeping a positive attitude in whatever he finds himself doing.
"I've made many a mistake, sometimes worked two or three hours on a pattern that didn't work out and had to throw it away, but I had enough stubbornness in me that I wasn't gonna let it whip me, so I'd go back and start all over," he said.
That determination, coupled with inherent creativity have been key factors to Houp's successful endeavors.
"I have a ninth grade education and have never seen anything in construction work that I couldn't do - if I wanted to do it," he said.
The finished work in his shop is a mix of all shapes, sorts and sizes. It might be a bowl, a pitcher or a vase or the results of even more tedious work, such as a doll-sized log cabin - complete with miniature wooden furniture and tableware, even fireplaces, outhouses and moonshine stills.
He has crafted over 100 sets of kitchen cabinets, made numerous pieces of furniture and - being a horseman for many years - he made his own pony carts.
Sometimes he gets his wood fresh from the trees at the saw mill he operates with his son, Kenny Jr., but he sees the value in what he calls odd ball pieces of wood, which he picks up when barns, churches or libraries are torn down.
Thanks to his prudent eye, many of his pieces are not only rich in craftsmanship but also carry a nostalgic hint of local history in them.
His woodwork can be found as far away as England, and he said there's no telling how many pieces are throughout Kentucky. He's never advertised - word of mouth has sold his work for years.
Fruit bowls have become his trademark.
"I tinker with something 'til I get tired of it but turning bowls is something I never get tired of," he said, even after over a quarter of a century of making them.
"It's so relaxing to me - I could ... be stressed, and 15 minutes after I start turning a bowl on the lathe the stress is gone," he said with a smile.