Thursday, December 29, 2011

Oh Hello There : Back in the Habit

Hello sweet readers! Did you have a lovely Christmas and New Years?

Here's some questions I've gotten recently :
1. Are you Dead?
     - No. Yippee!

2. Are you Pregnant?
     - Hahah, no.

3. Have you quit blogging?
     - Heeeeck no. I love blogging.

December completely zapped all of my free time, energy, and creativity reservoirs. Whew it was a mammoth month. I'll tell more over the next few weeks.

I'm not sure how to catch up at this point, but I suppose just diving in is best, yes?

To get the blogging juices flowing again, here some photos of my Christmas Instagrams.

Mmmm...gourmet gingerbread lattes at Union Station
Save my Dad! (Movie night with the family goes wild)
Most delicious open-faced artichoke sandwich from Room 39 in Midtown KC
Family fun at the shooting range (that's husband with a handgun)
Oh my gosh I have so much to share with you!!! BLAH! Stay tuned I guess!

Much love, Lisa

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Three Holiday Bark Recipes

First off, who else finds "bark" to be a hilariously unappetizing name for candy treats?

This weekend marked the second annual cookie exchange amongst my girlfriends. Because I had to be out of town all weekend right up until the hour before the party, I had to bake way in advance. Solution? Bark.

I also had no chance to print recipes. Solution? A blog post that all can reference if needed.

Bittersweet Chocolate Lemon Bark

Recipe originally found on I ended up having to spread the candied lemon peel out on parchment paper to bake it in the oven at 350 for 10 minutes. I needed to make it breakable instead of gummy-sticky.

Mocha Meringue Bark

Delicious and light! I typically cook variations on ingredients and processes that I already know. The world of meringue was rather intimidating, but one must learn these things. Turns out that this was my favorite bark of the three. Found on by Claire Robinson.

Somoa Bark

Riiiiiiiiich and delicious. Coconut was another food adventure for me this time around. I used a smaller pan instead of the recommended 9x13 (a girl only has so many 9x13 pans!), so my somoa bark turned out thicker than necessary. Recipe found on

All together at the cookie exchange :


Friday, December 9, 2011

Something True for Friday

As evidenced by my lack of blogging this week, (and even more so by my lack of guilt about it!), I have had a crazy week. 10-11 hours at the factory each day, and then home for 2-3 hours of freelance work. I am so scared that I will miss the beautiful Christmas season! I don't want all of December to become a blur of stress and neglect.

So I was really happy to hear a couple of true and simple stories from my mom about her Christmas season. It's all I have for pictures or anything.

In my home county of Johnson County, KS, there is a Christmas Bureau every year. Disadvantaged families under the poverty line are allowed to come to the Christmas Bureau each year. In different rooms, they can pick one gift for each of their children and one gift for each adult in the house. They can choose a set number of produce, meat, bread, and dairy products. In yet another room, they can pick a specified number of household items.

Now. This year Mom worked in the adult gift room, and she told me these two stories.

1. There are many single mothers who come through the bureau. This year my mom talked to several of them as they entered the adult gift room. My mom greeted each one saying, "this is the adult gift room. Pick out something for yourself." With these words several of the women teared up. Could this be the first time they've been able to think about something for themselves all year? Do they practice such self-denial to try to make life work for their children, that the mere mention of a choice for themselves touches a deep need?

2. An old man in a wheelchair and taking oxygen pushed himself around the room, starting with the men's section. (Remember this is the section where the adults can pick a gift item for every adult in their household.) This man lived alone, and clearly struggled to make ends meet. After browsing the men's section for a time, my mom noticed him move along to the women's section. The next time she noticed him, he was checking out with a women's gift as his selection. "This is for my nurse," he said. Sweet, unselfish man with no family to buy gifts for still passed up a new item for himself to gift his nurse, who may be his most beloved companion. I melt.

Really makes me think about what to do with my Christmas season this year. It's so easy to help people, and a dollar can go a long way.

PS, speaking of Christmas! Don't forget to check out The UpCycled Pillow giveaway going on now! Designer pillowcases make great stocking stuffers!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Giveaway : The Up-Cycled Pillow

You may remember that I announced the opening of my Etsy shop, The Up-Cycled Pillow, where I am repurposing beautiful designer fabrics destined for the garbage. When you have a blog and a shop, the option is clear : hello first ever MHHM giveaway!

Here's how this is all going to go down.

The winner will receive two Up-Cycled Pillow cases of their choice out of those listed on the site at the time of their selection (after the winner is announced).

The giveaway begins today and will close Monday, December 12th at 12:00am.

You can enter one of four ways :
  1. Follow Making Home Homemade on your favorite blog feed! After you have done so, leave me a comment below to let me know.
  2. Sign up to follow Making Home Homemade via email. The button and field to do this is listed to your left. Let me know you did it by writing a comment below.
  3. Add Making Home Homemade to your Bloglovin' feed. After you have done so, write a comment to tell me!
  4. Select "Like" on the Facebook page of TheUpcycledPillow. Once again, write a comment below to keep me up to date.

On Tuesday, December 13th I will select a random winner from the comments on this post and will notify the winner.

Good luck lovely people!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Hunger Games T-Shirts

I've had a ton of fun designing and selling these Twilight Tees.

I've had so much fun that the only thing better would be designing, manufacturing, and selling tees for my new favorite teen trilogy and upcoming blockbuster : the Hunger Games!

Today I loaded my new Team Peeta and Team Gale tees to sell on Etsy. What do you think? Whose team are you on?

Thanks to my lovely models :)


Friday, December 2, 2011

Something Musical for Friday

Do you know Andy Grammer? He is the most recent addition to my list of favorite musicians. His songs are upbeat, positive, wholesome. I can't help but he really like that? In the case of Andy Grammer, does art reflect life?

Help me find out!

During our Friends' Thanksgiving Dinner of 2011, our friends danced and lip-synced the night away to Andy's song "Fine By Me" as a part of a contest to win a Christmas day serenade from the man himself.

First we need the points. Every view is worth two points, and everyone that attends this Facebook event is 5 points. Help us along the way!

More importantly, this video just feels like a celebration of the hilarious, fun-loving, spontaneous people we are privileged to know. Husband and I are so thankful for each person in the video and how much each enhances and blesses our life here.

I am so glad we have video record (/evidence) of these happy shenanigans. 

Here's the week's wrap up...a fairly active week for this blog I'd say!

Rich and Delish Peanut Butter and Grahams Chocolate Candy-Cookies

The annual Gift Wrap Up of my favorite papers for this year. Which do you think I should use?

Pictures from Husband's family's farm over the holiday break.

Everyone have a musical weekend!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Peanut Butter and Graham Cracker Chocolates

Warning : I chose to make these because it seemed simple : minimal ingredients, no chemistry. However it ended up taking me several hours. Therefore, make this recipe for the love of baking, not for the love of speeding through to the next item on your to-do list.

Peanut Butter and Graham Cracker Chocolates
1 Box of Graham Crackers (I purchased the ones packaged in squares)
1 Bag of Dark Chocolate Chips (Or milk if that suites you better)
8 oz. of Chocolate Baking Chocolate or Chocolate Almond Bark
1 Bag of White Chocolate Chips
8 oz. of White Baking Chocolate or Almond Bark
1 15oz Jar of Smooth Peanut Butter
2 cups Confectioners Sugar

1. Break the graham crackers into squares.
2.Combine the dark chocolate chips with the baking chocolate (broken into pieces) in a microwave safe bowl. Heat in the microwave according to instructions.
3. One at a time, dip about 20 graham cracker squares into the chocolate mixture and set aside on wax or parchment paper to harden. Set aside the remaining chocolate.
4. Repeat steps 2-3 for the white chocolate.

5. In another bowl, mix full jar of peanut butter with 1.5 cups of powdered sugar. Add more powdered sugar if needed. Consistancy should be like sticky clay. You should have to mix with your hands before it's right! MMMmmm.
6. Take about a 1inch ball of the peanut butter mixture and drop it onto a graham square. Using your fingers, push and shape the peanut butter around the square until it covers the square in an even layer.
7. Repeat for all graham squares.

8. Refrigerate squares with peanut butter layer for about 30 minutes.
9. Right before you remove the squares, re-melt the chocolate mixture.
10. This is the tricky part. The method I found best for covering the squares with another layer of chocolate is as follows. While leaving the graham on a flat surface, pour or spoon some of the melted chocolate onto the top middle. Using a knife, push the chocolate to the edges and spread over the sides. Cover all squares with a chocolate coating.
11. While the chocolate is more than half set on the grahams, drizzle/fling the remaining melted chocolate over the squares with a fork. This creates the decoration lines.
12. Let the chocolate set overnight.
13. Devour. :)

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Gift Wrap Up : 2011

We are into the Christmas season!

It's time for the annual gift wrap up for 2011. What wrapping paper should I use this year for our family tradition? (Every year each person wraps with one wrapping paper to identify their gifts).  I find myself leaning a little more rustic-natural this year. Here are the 2011 contenders:

You can see the 2010 considerations here.


Friday, November 25, 2011

The Farmlands

This is the beautiful Ohio farm that I spent my holiday exploring. Husband's family has been on this land for a hundred years.

The House on the Farm

Morning view from the house

Barns in the Backyard

Husband and I on a Morning Walk through the Fields

My Hand on the Combine Wheel to Show Scale

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is a holiday I love to take seriously.

Therefore! Thank you for being here on my blog, thank you for sharing your thoughts with me, and thanks for the encouragement you've given this year. I've had fun, and am grateful.

A thought for this nice, long holiday weekend :

"Gratitude is our greatest weapon against fear, doubt, and discouragement." - Strong Challenge

Love to everyone, and Happy Thanksgiving!


Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Thanksgiving Party Activities 2011

Each year we have a Friends' Thanksgiving Dinner on the weekend before the national Thanksgiving holiday.

To segment the evening, we had a few activities : Thanksgiving Trivia and Thankful-For-You cards. They were just little additions to the event. I thought I'd share them, in case you are looking to spark conversation about Thanksgiving at your celebrations! Download them at the links below; they are set up in printable format.

Thanksgiving Trivia 8.5x11" : Download
Thanksgiving Trivia Answer Key :  Download

Thankful-For-You Encouragement Cards : Four cards on 8.5x11" : Download


Monday, November 21, 2011

A Pumpkin Cake

The holidays are coming and my life is swirling out of control! Every moment from now until Thanksgiving is packed with freelance, photography, packing, gift buying...I love it and I don't.

Hopefully I can squeeze in a few posts.

I made this pumpkin shaped cake for a party this weekend. Though it looks hefty, it's very easy. I used two boxed spice cakes, a bundt pan (twice...once both cakes are cool, one flips on top of the other to make the round shape), and simple homemade buttercream frosting. The leaves are a clay-like mixture of buttercream and melted white chocolate. 

My cakes-piration came from

Also! I just joined Twitter! Tweet me @Lisa_Langenhop


Wednesday, November 16, 2011

The UpCycled Pillow

I'm am so excited to introduce The UpCycled Pillow!

The UpCycled Pillow is a side project of mine, born out of my distress as I watched beautiful designer fabric scraps be discarded at my manufacturing job. Small pieces of expensive, high-end fabrics are deemed unusable once they no longer fit any of the product patterns and are trashed. Strike the distress!

I have set out to find a use and home for these remnants. I am creating decorative pillow cases and selling them via Etsy. Because I get the fabric for extremely low cost compared to their designer retails, I can pass the savings on to the buyer.

Brand name fabrics, less waste, inexpensive. win. Win. and WIN.

I will be loading new pillow cases every day or so through the holidays and will post each addition to the new Facebook page. Like it to keep track of what goes live for sale. Remember each pillow is one of a kind!

PS. I'll be having my first every giveaway next week. Can't wait!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Friday, November 11, 2011

Something Money-Savvy for Friday

Did anyone else have a nasty week at work? This girl did. But it is the month of Thanksgiving, so instead of complaining, I am going to exercise my grateful muscle:
1. It is good to have a steady job.
2. It is good not worry about finances because I have a steady job.
3. I am thankful of jeans every day at work.
4. I like the pretty colors and fabrics I get to deal with at work.
5. I am thankful my mom is visiting this weekend!

Okay, feelin' better.

I've had a rush of motivation for DIY these last few weeks, and when I came upon this post from HuzzahVintage, I was totally inspired. Such a functional DIY. This Surf Spray by Bumble and Bumble is almost always in my hair. I love the natural beach texture it creates. But of course, it is pricey. 

Photo via HuzzahVintage
When I run out, I'm going to try the homemade version! Check out the recipe on HuzzahVintage.

Here's the week's recap. This was one of my favorite blogging weeks in a while....hmmm. Maybe back week at work = good week blogging?

DIY Twig Wreath, rustic style!

Backyard composting is much easier that I expected!

My first guest post! 6 Five-Minute Ways to Spark Creativity. 
Or you can go right to the post on Daily-Sips.

Everyone have a Money-Savvy weekend!


Thursday, November 10, 2011

Guest Post : This time it's me!

You know I love hosting guest posts here. Share the knowledge I say! It's my favorite part of hosting a blog I believe. You can imagine therefore, how excited I was to be asked to be a guest blogger!

Kelley of Daily-Sips invited me to write a little something about creativity. (If you remember, Kelley recently guest posted for us here, about how to be a level-headed super-star of couponing.)

Stop on by Daily-Sips today to check out my post : 
6 Five-Minute Ways to Spark Your Creativity

I'll give you some might include high heels, memory lane, and spontaneous dancing. It's actually a lot more reasonable than that list just made it sound.

If you are here from Daily-Sips, welcome! I'm excited to get to know you! Please feel free to introduce yourself.

My mom is visiting this weekend. Welcome mom! In honor of that, here's the best family photo we've taken in recent years : 

I come by it honest.


Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Easy Backyard Compost

My backyard in the fall! 

We've been meaning to start a compost pile for quite a while. After researching, it's actually easier than I expected. The first layer is dried leaves, so autumn is actually a great time to start composting. Here are the steps to our simple compost pile. 

I cleared out this tall plastic bin (24" tall or more) from the basement. It's important that the lid seal completely. 

Flip the the bin over and drill 8-10 holes into the bottom. 

Fill the bottom with dried leaves (this time wonderfully raked up by Husband). Fill it about 1/3 full. The leaves will compress when you load the next layers. 

Shovel in dirt until the bin is approximately 1/2 full. 

Mist the dirt until damp but not wet. Too much water can cause that horrible compost smell. Replace the lid and drill another 8-10 holes into the top. Place in a shady place. Throw in biodegradable table scraps and stir slightly each time. This is a list of things to never compost, including bread, dairy, and meat products.

It's done! So simple! The garden will love us next spring. 


Monday, November 7, 2011

DIY : Rustic Twig Wreath

Inspired by this post from The Painted Hive, I created a wreath for our front door!! It's kind of a big deal people...this is the first effort I've ever put forth on decorating the exterior of our house.

I love its rustic, natural style. The twigs came from our backyard fire kindling pile, so there's a nice homey touch too!

The supplies are simple : twigs, hot glue, twine, and some sort of round base. Even a cut out cardboard doughnut would suffice. I sliced mine in half to create a flat face. Also, now I can make another wreath some day!

Using the hot glue, wrap the base with twine. The twine hides the base, but also gives the hot glue a strong texture on which to cling

Arrange the sticks around the base. Use diverse lengths. After you are satisfied with the arrangement, glue all the sticks down! I went back around and added really short twigs on top of the first layer to build some depth.

The best part? It is supposed to look messy and natural! Imperfections welcome!

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