Author Archives: Sudesh

About Sudesh

Sudesh Girdhari spends time thinking about Enterprise Services, Support and Enterprise Application Delivery. He has one questions that nags at his psyche "How do organization best provide support there Enterprise business units and how do they best deliver their services" He lives in Atlanta, GA and enjoys the outdoors.

A Memorial Weekend..

The journey with the kids continues, we have some friends that were kind enough to invite us to there creek side mountain cabin when they head up {For Memorial Day weekend 2013}. Its always nice to go to a place that can accommodate our dogs and our kids! On this particular trip we had lots of fun with the kids, creek, outdoors and nearby town of Copper Hill, TN. ( Interesting side note the Bura Bura Mine in Ducktown, TN, was one of the 2 things that 1969 astronauts could see from space when they first entered (the Great wall was the other))

2013-05-25 11.17.54

What we learned from this trip:

  • Planning meals ahead was a good idea, and left us time to run around and take great nature walks.
  • Yelp reviews pay-off and we found a great Cuban Sandwich shop!
  • The dollar general is a destination (as is Copper Hill and Maccaysville)
  • An outdoor water play ground will entertain toddler and adults during the middle of the day.
  • Bob strollers, definitely are suitable for gravel roads
  • Bring a projector to watch movies at night, was a great way for the adults to mellow out before bedtime 😉

Special thanks to the Walters for the accommodations, child care, and the invite.

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Posted by on May 28, 2013 in Uncategorized


Spring Break CHS Family Vacation 2013

Our first family vacation started out a bit rough.. we got on the road on Friday 3/29/2013 and traffic was pretty tough as it was rush hour out of Atlanta, GA.


The first hour was spent with us explaining to Hart that we were going to the Beach and she accepted that willingly! We stopped for food outside of Covington, GA about an hour from the house to realize Sudesh forgot his wallet. At this point we decided to turnaround and get it and this put us another hour behind. We finally pulled in around 2am and everyone was asleep until 7am at which point Hart and Sol woke us up.

We dragged ourselves out of bed and day 1 of vacation had begun off to check on our rental house. Then breakfast at the Village Cafe, in old town Mt. Pleasnt, when we got home we decided to go to the Beach.

By the second day of our trip we had established that taking to young children on vacation, was much more of an adventure in child care than anything else! We learned a good bit about balancing priorities, and decided that next vacation we needed to find another couple with kids, that would be willing to help out. (let us know if your interested)

Day 3 and we got a bit more beach time and this helped out tremendously, Hart really liked the water, and this made us look forward to warmer weather. Unfortunately it was really windy on Folly so this meant no swimming or splashing. We also got to get a bike ride in and test the bike trailer.

Day 4 & 5 are a blur of sleepless nites as baby Sol was not happy about the change of venue and outings to take care of our house in Charleston!

And after all that we made it back safe and sound!

Pictures of the adventure are here:Pictures

Woof Woof! Puppy and Human went with us and loved the yard and sand!

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Posted by on May 1, 2013 in Uncategorized



Girdhari 2012 A Recap!

Well how do you really recap a year of life?  Girdhari holiday 2012

I guess we can start at the end of 2011…

Sudesh & Melissa enjoyed there time in Charleston, but as Hart was starting to get older we both realized it was time to to move back to Atlanta, GA.  We have both had a penchant for the city where we met and Sudesh has a large extended family living in the metro area. We both have life long friends who live close by and who have children in similar age groups. It was nice getting back to the city and we decided to rent a house for the year (2012). We both found jobs that we enjoy and got to work raising Hart!

Let’s look back on 2012…

January we celebrated Hart’s first year with a fun Chili Party!  And started the process for remodeling our May Ave house.

February we found out (Melissa) was pregnant, so we started the process of finding a family home (a house in which, we could raise a large family comfortably).  We also took a trip out to California to visit Grandpa Joe and Grandma AJ.  This is also were Sudesh got stuck in the sand!  We met with our architect and finalized plans and met with the structural engineer.

March Melissa took a sewing class with Emily and they learned the fundamentals of sewing. Since the class, Melissa hasn’t found much time to sew but has a list of projects collecting on Pintrest.  We took Hart on her first outdoor adventure to Mccaysville,TN for a cabin adventure (Thanks Julie, Andrew and Gretchen).  This is where she took some steps but it wasn’t until April when the walking began.  We started to realize that remodeling May Ave from a 1940’s bungalow to a contemporary structure was not cost effective thus we met with our Realtor, David Vannort at Atlanta Intown Realty.

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April we took Hart to visit Disney World (one is much to young!, and it was an excuse to see Jay & Sydney) (Accommodations were courtesy of Beth and Emily, thanks for making this trip possible!)  April also brought us a visit from Grandpa Joe, Melissa’s dad, and Hart’s first steps.  As all parents experience, the kids don’t walk they run!  With plans stopped on May Ave. we put in numerous offers to foreclosures and short sales in East Atlanta, only to loose out to contractors. Ohh Sudesh also surprised Melissa with a new (to us) minivan 🙂  On the Friday before Mother’s Day Sudesh fly up to Ohio, drove four hours to the dealership, bought the minivan, then drove to Atlanta.  Melissa didn’t suspect a thing as Sudesh used the common excuse that he would be on calls all day and then out with Henry to see a local band.  The only fault in the plan was that when Sudesh pulled up to the house Human and Puppy started barking because they didn’t recognize the car.  Melissa being concerned had to check out the commotion thus finding the new van and Sudesh behind the wheel.  The plan was to present the car the next morning with a tiny bow on it.  Either way, Sudesh was able to get a fantastic deal on a Toyota Sienna so we could accommodate two kids, two dogs, two adults and guests, comfortably!

2012-04-20 18.46.47 2012-04-20 16.51.33 2012-04-20 16.01.33 2012-04-20 15.16.33 2012-05-19 10.19.47 2012-05-12 08.06.492012-04-05 12.38.25 2012-03-31 11.37.59 2012-03-31 11.37.55 2012-04-05 21.47.52

May Melissa took a course to create Computer Based Training and Sudesh started a fitness boot camp. We enjoyed the Cabin visit so much we took Hart back!  and the dogs!  The house hunt continued with our search moving away from East Atlanta to nearby neighborhoods- Ormewood Park, Grant Park, Kirkwood, Chandler Park…

June took us to Bonaroo with free back stage passes (Thanks to Sarah, Henry, and Charlotte) We also got to see the University of the South (Suwanee).  Hart loved staying up and playing with Char and they both began to conquer the stairs much to our chagrin.  More house hunting then took us to put a few offers on houses in the City of Decatur, again to loose out to higher bids.

July we enjoyed the Georgia summer heat! and found our new home… in Ormewood Park.  The move meant leaving our beloved East Atlanta, we are only 5 minutes from the May Ave. house but it meant switching schools. Yeah, I know what you’re thinking, you’re concerned about school already?!?, but with Melissa being an educator it’s important to us to be involved in the local public school.  So bye Burgess-Peterson PTA, hello Parkside PTA and Neighborhood Charter PTA.  Keeping our options open, more like being involved at both in case Hart wins the lottery in a few years! July also became the month that we sold Sudesh’s Vespa, leaving his single life behind, but also brought us his beloved Low-Speed vehicle, also known as a golf cart, the Gem.  Or as Hart calls it, The Go-Go Machine.

August we bought our new house and remodeled it a little bit! (refinish some hardwood floors, install hardwoods in bedrooms, paint rooms, build a fence (remember we have two crazy dogs who like to check out the neighborhood un-escorted, making the house more energy efficient  hello 2102 rebates!).  It took awhile to purchase the house as there was some negotiating about a proposed easement… but we moved in at the end of the month.  It was the right house, the right time, so it all worked out.  Not to mention the house had everything on our wish list.  Thanks to David Vannort for his continued support finding the right house for us!  Thankfully Ajee, Chandra- Sudesh’s mother, came to help unpack boxes and set up the house (Melissa was very pregnant  so we could house an end of the month Housewarming Party.  It was a crazy timeline but with Chandra’s help we made it work! Hart started school in August at The Ormewood School.  She goes two days a week from 9:30 to 1:30 pm.  She enjoys going to school and reminds us of who she will see, Char-Char (friend & classmate), Pearl (classmate) and Debbie (one of her teachers).  Hart continues to grow leaps and bounds in her language, cognitive development, gross and fine motor skills, etc. and all thanks to The Ormewood School and our fantastic nanny, Jamie Mayo.  Jamie joined us in August and has fast become a member of the family.

2012-06-27 10.39.34

September brought the nesting out in Melissa as she prepared for baby.  It also brought us a visit from Jay and Sydney.  Other than the visit, we continued to settle in the house, work and raise Hart.

October started the holiday season with Hart dressing as a Spider and enjoying passing out candy to Trick-r-Treaters.  She was under the weather so early to bed with a dose of medicine.

2012-10-27 17.06.59

November 8th brought the new family addition- Solara “Sol” Issa Girdhari.  6lbs, 8oz. She looks just like Hart but definitely has her own personality.  Chandra came to visit, help with Sol and play with Hart.  Hart has fallen in love with her Ajee, talking walks, having tea, and bonding over books and the morning routine.  Since Ajee’s visit, Hart has been asking for Ajee.  Every time the phone rings, you can hear Hart, “Ajee, Ajee, Ajee?”  We also had a fantastic visits from friends and family welcoming Sol to the family.  Melissa’s brother, Joe was Stateside and was able to come for Thanksgiving, it was a great time bonding over turkey, tablet devices and walks.  Joe and his family live in Belgium (he’s in the ARMY) so it was a special treat for the holidays.

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December has brought us bonding time with Hart and Sol and a low key Christmas.  As for the “Christmas Tree” we hadn’t had one for several years and didn’t have any decorations and now since Hart is older Melissa wanted a tree.  Sudesh was not as eager as he wanted Hart to want a tree, whereas Melissa informed me that in order for Hart to want a tree we have to give her the experience first.  The compromise was a tree the size of Hart, well a little taller, and ornaments that she could hang- no glass.   Towards the New Year we will have another visit from Jay and Sydney.

We look forward to 2013 with some activities already on the books…. Hart’s 2nd birthday, Jay & Sydney’s wedding in June, some camping this summer, Nicoli’s wedding this summer in Germany, Marlyn and Raj’s wedding in October, Sol’s 1st birthday…. to name a few.

Here’s to a fantastic and wild 2012 and a new and exciting 2013!

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Posted by on December 21, 2012 in Uncategorized


Mama and Solara Issa Girdhari


Everyone’s doing well and baby is trying to nurse

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Posted by on November 8, 2012 in Uncategorized


She’s here!


A little baby girl 6 pounds 8 ounces

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Posted by on November 8, 2012 in Uncategorized


Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known..

It’s just not happening here (yet).. we got to the hospital way early so mostly, it’s waiting in a tiny room, while various nurses poke Melissa. Melissa and baby both are healthy, they have the baby heartbeat monitor on and it sounds just like an Orca Whale.  As of now we are scheduled for a 1 pm, there is a chance we could get bumped, so for now cross your fingers..

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Posted by on November 8, 2012 in Uncategorized


Is this thing on? Stay Tuned for an impending birth..

It;s been roughly 1 year since our last post! A great deal has transpired, when Melissa has time she’ll be updating you on the year of change. If your reading this on a tiny screen or have a nat’s attention span see below.

  • We moved back to Atlanta from Charleston and rented a house
  • Hart learned to walk, talk and express herself
  • Sudesh & Melissa changed jobs
  • We bought a home ( post to come on that)
  • Melissa got pregnant and is delivering on 11/8 @ around 11am

Stay tuned for new posts!

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Posted by on November 7, 2012 in Uncategorized


Let’s get structural!

As I mentioned in previous articles we are in the midst of a remodel. One of the biggest risks for a homeowner and a contractor in building a house is that it falls down. Click this link to see what that looks like: Residential Structural Failure

If you remember we narrowed down the house concept to a final (here) soon there will be a final draft released!

You may have picked up that our house one livable floor with about a 900 sqft attic. Ideally we would like to cut off the roof an make it a box, this is primarily because a box maximizes space and minimizes cost.

When you do this you should ask two questions:

  • What goes up top ? In our case 4 bedrooms, 3 baths and a laundry room
  • Will the house foundation and walls support this weight? Call a structural engineer (Marc Sorenson), and have them take a look.

We were able to have Marc come by and take a look, prior to doing this we asked our architect to inspect the foundation footings and the structural layout of our ceiling. Things went great for us, our footers are deep enough for the added load, and our ceiling ‘as-is’ can hold another story. Of course this was informal and not official or binding but took a lot of risk out of our project.

This was also a great time to have a contractor and architect present which we did! I asked questions about different techniques would be most cost effective, who would prefer what, and how the project could be changed to cut costs. In the end we decided that Wood I beams or Structurally Engineered Trusses would be best. We also made some changes that would lower cost by decreasing the spans that would be required between rooms.

This just goes to show that doing planning and discussion up front pays great dividends.

Next up contractor down select and final bid …

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Posted by on February 13, 2012 in Uncategorized


1639 May Ave. Final Conceptual Design

It literally took 8 months to put together our home remodel project..

Here’s a picture of our house current day. It’s a great place with some serious negatives.

  • It the summer its cold in the winter it’s hot, it would cost about 15-20k to insulate (new doors, windows, insulation, siding)
  • The attic was built with expansion in mind, but won’t support the weight of people and furniture.
  • The house is a bunch of small compartments, the smallest of which is the bathroom (see floor plan below)
  • The kitchen is not suited for a family or entertainment
  • The fireplace is useable with 2 logs max
  • Plastic siding, no insulation or exterior encapsulation
  • Crawl space needing attention
  • 1000 sqft + 2 adults, 2 Dogs, 1 Toddler = No privacy lots of knocks on the bathroom door.



    About 5 years ago we started with Joel Aviles of Topo International. Joel had built many “spec’ homes in the East Atlanta Village and on the surrounding streets. At that time we considered a very traditional look which is featured below.

This house was the perfect resale house and we thought about it that way.. the floor plan kept intact the fire place and most walls to achieve cost savings. The floor plan is below..

Above you see one of the major issues what a remodel of this nature. We lost about 800sqft due to roof lines.. We would be replacing the roof in this remodel. Finally this remodel would not make good use of the sun position our house faces west.


Current Concept

Having a kid changes your life, it also changes your floor plan, ask anyone who has tried to shoe horn a child seat into a Mustang or make counters to low for a booster seat. So we created the list below to help us understand what we wanted in our house.

  • Master Suite – Bathroom, stand-up shower, claw-foot tub & Walk In Closet
  • 3 Bedrooms / Large nook for closet space thinking maybe 12×14
  • Office away from main living area with door
  • Great room to combine living, dinning and kitchen- located in rear of house next to outdoor entertaining space
  • Kitchen remodel (walk in pantry), Island, Side by side refrigerator and freezer
  • 3 full Bathrooms 1 powder room
  • Laundry room & Mud Room combo near rear of house bottom floor
  • Energy Efficient room placement- high sun areas energy star approved Doors and Windows
  • Detached 3 car garage w/ in-law suite close to house
  • Rear Porch and Entertainment Areas
  • upstairs porch on back
  • Central Equipment Closet size

After several revisions we came up with a concept we like below are a sample of the concepts we reviewed..


Original Concept with “Green Suggestions”


Second Pass concept with “Max out the usable space suggestions”

Rear                                                                Front


Third Pass with “Economy Class Option”


And the winner is the Second Option..

We liked the open floor plan and the most useable space

1st Floor                              2nd Floor 3rd Floor (deck)


It includes a garage (Front)                                    and a fireplace (rear)


Next is the selecting a contractor phase come back to see more about that!

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Posted by on February 2, 2012 in Uncategorized


Remodel Reading Material…

The remodel reading material when considering a large or small remodel project in Atlanta, GA or anywhere for that matter…

When we started our remodel we created a list of things we wanted in and out of our house.

There were a couple of books that came in especially helpful list here:

  • THE Survival Guide: Home Remodeling by Plesset, Diane
    • A room by room review of what you should consider
  • Designing Your Dream Home: Every Question to Ask, Every Detail to Consider, and Everything to Know Before You Build or Remodel by Susan Lang
    • Literally the next level checklist this book has a review for everything you should consider.
  • The Visual Handbook of Building and Remodeling, 3rd Edition by Charlie Wing
    • Control Freaks, raise your hand this book is a contractors nightmare, it takes a visual look at how your house should be built
  • What Your Contractor Can’t Tell You: The Essential Guide to Building and Renovating by Amy Johnston
    • This book is the catchall for your questions you should iron out prior to construction starting.. It covers topics from finances, to project management, and includes tips on where to cut corners and where to spend a little extra..
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Posted by on February 2, 2012 in Uncategorized