Returning home to the NYC Metro area was great for me. We needed a real home, though. Tarrytown was a great place to live, fun, good food, a great mix of suburban and city life. It was time to go, though. The house we rented was not one we wanted to own, but the owner wanted to sell and stop renting.

We started the search for the next Resort Melcher. We wanted a “cute” downtown with some local businesses and a few good restaurants. Tarrytown had given us the taste and we were not giving that up. I wanted a single family home with a bit of ground. Karen wanted to build. Moving back introduced the “distance from Reading” constraint. Throw all that in a spreadsheet (Oh, yes, she did!) and you get Denville, NJ.

Morris County balanced the daily commute with the weekend commute quite nicely. It was always that section of the drive home from Reading where I was tired of driving and Karen Just wanted to be there already. Now it is home so we are “there already” and I can stop driving. We go to the Homestead in Reading for the day!

Food is a compromise, Nothing is going to beat Isabella’s. Having your own little Italian Restaurant* 200 yards from home is just awesome. Denville has the Second Half on Main. It is good food, but more “pub fare” done well than “fine dining” close to home. It trumps the Sante Fe for me, but Karen was never a real Sante Fe fan.

We have good sushi places, too many for my preference. Casa Bella is close, but not walking close. It approaches Isabella’s but falls a little short.

Drive In Liquors covers the Liquor store across the parking lot need. Real liquor runs take us to Liquor Outlet in Boonton. That place is awesome!

Did I mention the house, on a hill, near a lake with a community club that hosts events and runs a pub night every week? Yep, got that too.

Photos: Finishing up 6


Karen had a big birthday this year. I managed to get 40 people to call her on the date. She has friends all over the world, so scheduling was the key. She got calls from a dozen states, London, Singapore and somewhere off the coast of Brunei.

We followed that up with a surprise party at Linda’s.

Photos: 40

Kyle 21

We went to NYC to catch a show, the sights and some beers for Kyle's 21st birthday. When we noticed the date sign we had to have the birthday shot.

Indepenence Day

Independence Day is a big “thing” for the Melcher clan. My Dad was born the fifth, so there is always a combined birthday party. Chris loves to shoot the works, so there is no shortage of noise and flash. We always catch the neighbors’ attention.

Photos: July 4

Blue Water

I love the fact that our office building is surrounded by park land and has a lake with a fountain. I just wish it wasn't tidy bowl blue. I am not sure if this is just a Jersey thing or what, but it is BLUE!

The 2 Party System

It is good to be back! We were invited to a major summer bash at the Reid's. When Kevin plans anything it is always well executed. His parties are full of great food, great alcohol and great people. It doesn't hurt that he is employed by an alcohol distribution company, so the "product knowledge" is a part of his life.

The party started at 4. We tasted wine as we were schooled by sommeliers. We sampled "Napa Style" appetizers. My wife contributed a Seafood Salad over Avocado dish that received rave reviews. She met a fellow "foodie" and they talked menus, ingredients and best food-gasms all night. He contributed an excellent Strawberry and Goat Cheese dip that got rave reviews.

Kevin smoked a whole tenderloin for about 2 hours and served it up sliced. I can only say "Wow!" I believe this dish will be making an appearance at my summer parties from this day hence.

After a full 8 hours of drinking, the party wound down. I gathered up the plates and glasses I loaned to the "effort" and packed the truck. We left the Reids and those who could not drive at about 1. I called up Chuck and Ivone to see if her 41st birthday party was still in swing and it was!

So off to party 2 of the evening. Ivone had excellent ribs and some Brazilian salad that I scarfed down. I also wrangled some much needed Guarana' soda to keep the party going. We chatted for a few moments with her co-workers. Crazy men DROVE up from Brooklyn! Most of the wise party goers took the train. My wife was definitely enjoying the company. Ivone and her co-workers are trainers and massage therapists. Mrs. C missed an opportunity!

Lab Work

Sometimes I have to work. I completed a big, painful to manage project this year. I had to take some photos of the completion phase.

Photos: Lab Notebook Scanning


Caleb is a reality! He was born Last night (June 19th) at 10:30.

8 pounds, 8 ounces, 22 inches. I tried to “be there” for this birth, but Kim took her sweet time and I had to go back to work.

Photos: Caleb


My repatriation from the Arizona desert leads me to a greater appreciation of the lush greens of the north east landscape. This is the Merritt Parkway in Connecticut. It is taken from Karen's new cell phone. Sorry for the blurry image, the speed of the vehicle exceeds the speed of the shutter.


Spring crept over the concrete wall in Tarrytown. I often send shocking photographs of snow and thermometers reading 17 to my Arizona friend where it is 117 and 7% humidity. This album is dedicated tot he other side. Sun, green and every color you could want to see.

Photos: Spring

Heavy with Dew

A slow, soaking, sixteen hour rain filled the flowers. These dogwoods are heavy with accumulated rain. The entry to work looks more like a set for a Lord of the Rings movie.


My nephew graduated, got a job and even got his own territory. He lives in Birmingham, AL now. He misses being near friends and family, but he seems to be fitting in the local scene just fine.

Video of Brett at a local charity ball placed here in the original post was taken down by the local news station because it was no longer new.

June Visit

Charlie and Shannon are planning a trip to see the Yankees before this stadium is history. Hey Charlie, we have the grass ready for you!

Of course you will be cheering toward the fake stuff, but we still have lawns for you to see, smell and feel.

Come On, Pelican!

Every Tuesday and Thursday morning Tarrytown cleans up its act by sweeping the parking lot that is my neighbor. Fortunately Monday and Wednesday night are not heavy drinking nights for me. I am sure this is not the pelican Tony Montana was cheering on, but I still hear the words.

Every Tuesday morning,
while the Pelican waits for the cars to clear out of the parking lot,
I walk to my truck and repeat the refrain:
"Come on, pelican!"

Once the operator actually heard me and just smiled knowingly. He probably says the refrain every morning.

Spring Has Sprung

Spring has happened again! In my favorite corner of the world winter seems to last forever. Then, when you are sure it will not end, fruit trees turn to flower and you remember why you lived through winter's bleak second half.

I had to take some time at lunch and just sit under the canopy. It could not be helped.


I don’t even recall the reason for the trip, maybe it was Easter? I encountered the imaginings of my 4 year old nephew. I was presented with a Crossword Puzzle book, but told it was a treasure map. The book was taken from me at (foam, toy) sword-point and he ran around the house looking for the treasure. I “took up arms” with another foam sword and we had a few epic battles.

Photos: Pirate Treasure


When did it become illegal to NOT READ your junk mail?

Seriously? Does this scare tactic work?

I can't even find this code on the web, I know there are federal statues protecting the U. S. Mail and USPS employees. Maybe it is a reference to those codes?

It's not just me, others are just as taken aback:
Link: Joe McKeever

Proper Commute

When the traffic is over there an your side is clear, you have chosen your commute wisely!

Race Fuel

We are watching the race at Las Vegas. My wife created her newest flavor of chili. Yes, that is Yuengling Lager in an official glass!

It's a Caleb

My sister Kim called to share the "pending" baby's name and sex. It will be a boy named Caleb Carlance. Damien was first Caleb is second. I guess the next name will start with "B" and than an Aaron, maybe? Then they will have to stop or go with Zephram.

Snow Day

Here it is, your moment of Zen:
YouTube: Snow Day

Peddler's Village

Work was stressful, money was not available for a big trip, so off the Village we drove. We enjoyed several trips to Peddler’s Village over the years. The Golden Plough is over the top for the movie set of a shopping trap that the Village represents. We always go when it’s cold and the fireplace get used heavily. The food is always good and Yeungling on tap makes any weekend great.

Travel 10g

My expense report from December was rejected.  Our company adopted some changes to the travel expense form and I missed the mark with my last submission.
The report was sent back to me with a small Post-It ™ Note attached:

“Purpose of Trip” is a new field on the form which is required.  I missed that step.  Shame on me.
What the heck is travel 10g?  Is this a new product from Oracle?  Possibly Oracle 10g for Mobile devices?  I am sure Kim intended to write “log” after “travel” but the short “l” and tall “O” led my eyes to read 10g.
Is it my consumption of too much Oracle Kool Aid or do you see one, zero, and either a “g” or “q”  before the “+” sign?


Saw this and could not resist!

Winter Wonderland

We definitely had the Winter Wonderland look yesterday. It was a beautiful drive to work. The "heat of the day" took it all away, though.

Asteroids project and 215 makes me happy.

Humidity as Fog

This one goes out to the AZ crowd...

On a clear (AZ Style) day you can see across the parking lot. There is a street light, telephone pole and a building on a hill. When the morning fog has not "burned off," though...

There is too much water in the air!

Smacked Again

I got hit from behind, again! The driver of a white minivan was distracted and failed to stop for the line of traffic stalled cars. She hit a Crown Victoria cab with enough speed to push it into my bumper. I am not hurt, but will need to make a claim on my nice new NYS insurance. This is the second bumper another driver will buy for me. I have to hand it to Honda, both times I heard the crash and felt a small goose, but was not injured. I am not fond of the $1200 price tag that accompanies these little trips to the adjuster and body shop, but the last time was paid in full rather quickly.

Yule Tide Receeding

The holiday is over and it was back to work for me. I was glad to have the generous time off over the holidays. We put up a tree for the first time in years. It really "felt" like a holiday should feel with the snow, cold, lights and trees. I really missed trees. I have to regain control of the camera from my wife, then I can post the holiday nuggets!

BTW got my iLife '08 upgrade and I really like it. My iPhoto is much faster. Still wish they would do multiple Library support or nested albums. I need my albums for integration to the web publisher, but I don't need to see them every time.


Tarrytown was a great place to land. All the Sleepy Hollow mystique, the proximity to NYC and the access to the Hudson make it a great place to spend time.

Photos: Tarrytown
Photos: St. Patrick’s Day
Photos: Fluffy Snow