Quick and Easy Ranch Chicken Bake

Hey friends! Life is so crazy right now. We are literally a day or two away from opening the hardware store that we’ve been working on for almost 2 years. We are waiting for the building inspector to come one last time and issue our occupancy permit. While we are knee-deep in the final stages of cleaning and general business I have my friend Emily here to share a great recipe for Ranch Chicken Bake (no ranch packet included! Yay!). By the end of the week I should have a post on the hardware store for you as well as one other super exciting announcement. Stay tuned! It’s also the last day to enter to win some fun lunch box gear, details here. Have a great Labor Day!


Hello Bless This Mess friends! Glad to be here! Are you surviving this summer?

This time of year, I have a few important goals:

1. Eat many popsicles. Like, a lot lot lot of popsicles.

2. Squeeze the last few fun moments of summer in (movie nights, playing in the water, etc.)

3. Try not to heat up my house. In any way.

This usually means lots of quickly cobbled together dinners. Thankfully, my family is okay with something like smoothies and eggs and bacon for dinner on the days it’s just really TOO hot to cook much. But for days where you’re looking for something more substantial or want to change things up a bit, this is a great recipe.

Simple, but flavorful, this is an easy open-faced sandwich that you can pair with salad or fruit and call it done. It’s easy to throw together after a long day and very customizable. You can use homemade ranch dressing or your favorite store-bought kind, swap the cheese for any that strikes your fancy, or (our favorite variation) add a little crumbled bacon!

So, next movie night (or hot night, or busy day) give this recipe a try. You might even have room for a few popsicles after!

Note: A few homemade ranch dressing recipes you might want to try…

Ranch Chicken Bake


  • 1/2 large loaf French bread (cut the whole loaf in half lengthwise and save the other half for another time)
  • 1 lb. chicken, cooked and shredded
  • 1-1 1/2 cups grated mozzarella or Monterrey Jack cheese
  • 1 -2 tomatoes, sliced or diced (diced is easier for little ones to manage)
  • 2 green onions, sliced
  • Ranch dressing (see recipes above)
  • optional: 1-2 slices bacon, cooked & crumbled


Preheat broiler, or bring oven to 400.

In a small bowl, combine chicken, green onions, and enough ranch dressing to make a chicken salad (some people like very little, others prefer more dressing). Scoop and spread onto bread.

Top with tomato and sprinkle with cheese. Bake just until cheese is bubbly and golden.

Cut into slices and serve.


Recipe by : One Lovely Life



19 Beautiful Basil Recipes

PicMonkey Collage

When you think of certain smells they conjure up memories of places and people from the past. As I carefully break off stems of basil from the plant with my fingers, that smell my friends, comes with all kinds of memories. I think of a certain apartment where I grew basil in a pot on the back porch and made bruschetta every day for a week. I think of my upstairs neighbor and how much I miss her (Hi Sarah!). And I think of Henry. He was just about Paul’s age that year, around 10 months, and it was at Continue Reading →

Ingredient Spotlight: Summer Squashes (or skwarsh if you are my grandma)


I’m hanging on to the last days of summer and enjoying the garden in all of it’s productive glory! Months worth of work are certainly worth it this time of year in terms of a garden. I thought it would be fun to highlight one of my very favorite summer ingredients – summer squash! And maybe you are cute like my Grandma Jane in Indiana and say “skwarsh”. No matter how you say it, it’s delicious. Here’s a little more info on the ever popular and ever producing vegetable.

All kinds of lunch box inspiration!


Today isn’t just lunch box inspiration, it’s also a giveaway of some really fun lunch box gear and products to get you excited for the coming school year! Keep reading, it’s a long post :)

It’s time to Back-to-School Shop till you drop (with a 25% off coupon!)

land's end11

This is my last post for Lands’ End and I just have to say this whole thing has been so much fun for my kids and I. It’s not every day that that some food loving hobby farmer (and her future little farmers) in the middle of no where get to be included in such fanciness. Thank you so much for enjoying the journey with me. Here’s what’s in it for you. I hope that I’ve given you some knowledge about what Lands’ End in has to offer us mommas of school aged kids (great quality clothes that are a Continue Reading →

The County Fair in all of it’s glory!

county fair 9

The county fair was this past weekend I’m so excited to show you a little peak at all the fun! Come see small town America in all of it’s glory!

My kids are CHILD MODELS! You should come see :)

Melissa Lands Ends

Sometimes my mother heart is just leaping out of my chest with excitement over the things my kids are doing. You know what I mean! Watching the ball soar on that amazing home run hit, the first time they sing a solo at church, or their tiny little voices at the school play. So rewarding. Well today is one of those days. I never wanted to have my kids be child models, but who doesn’t want their kids to be child models. #braggingrightsforyears Ok, ok, so they aren’t really child models but don’t they look like it? I’ve just been Continue Reading →

Rich Peanut Butter Brownies

peanut butter brownies

Happy Friday to you! Our county fair is this weekend and I’ve volunteered to be there lots and lots helping out with a country store. It should be a lot of fun, and if you’d like little sneak peaks of the action, tag along on instagram! I post there lots. I’m super excited to see how all of the things I entered into the fair were judged today too. I’m hoping for a few blue ribbons! I thought I’d celebrate my fun weekend with you by posting this delicious peanut butter brownie recipe. It’s rich and chocolaty with just the Continue Reading →

That One Time I went Back to School Shopping in my Robe

lands end 2

When we moved to the middle of no where a little over a year ago I knew that I would be sacrificing a few things in exchange for so many positive things. I left behind health food stores, museums, parks, and libraries. I gained land to grow a garden, a community like no other to raise my kids in, and a slower way of life that I am grateful for. I’ve found lots of hikes, sand dunes, and our little town pool to fill our recreational need. The bookmobile (a mobile library of sorts) stops by twice a month to Continue Reading →

16 Cucumber Recipes that are sure to please

PicMonkey Collage

Summer cucumbers are here and I have a great list of 16 cucumber recipes that are sure to please today. Confession: I didn’t like or eat cucumber until I was 24 years old. Pregnancy is a funny thing when it comes to food likes and dislikes. Each pregnancy I have stopped liking something I did previously and also started liking something I didn’t. Things I stopped liking or eating include: peanut butter icing, cream cheese icing, pineapple as in ingredient in savory dishes (like on pizza or on a kabob), and cilantro in large quantities (so sad about this one). Continue Reading →