Awkward Introductions

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Hello family, friends, people who don’t know us, people who will get to know us, people who will wish they didn’t get to know us! This is our very first blog post for Appalachian Trials and we are SO excited! We have been thinking about what to post since we were accepted to the 2016 class of bloggers back in November (that was a GREAT day), but we’ll just start by introducing ourselves a little. We are Josh and Maranda, a  happily married couple living in Cleveland, Georgia and we are starting our NOBO thru-hike in March. We have been hiking and climbing all over North Georgia since college and we completely fell in love with the mountains, the trails and the beauty that the land has to offer. We graduated from college and decided to get hitched (we figured since we’d been dating since the 11th grade, we might as well make it official) in May 2014, and have been begrudgingly living “adult life” (jobs, bills, blah blah blah) since then. We decided to do the AT when we were in college, but we didn’t really take the idea of a thru-hike seriously until last year. By the way, if you decide to follow our journey on this blog, you might notice a difference in writing styles, verbiage, and the increased usage of bathroom humor (Josh really loves a good poop joke). That’s because we will be alternating who updates the blog. We really want people to be able to see the trail through both of our eyes, as well as collectively as a young couple. So, here are some fun facts about us:


Fun Facts about Maranda:

  • I love cats more than people.
  • I have a degree in Early Childhood Education/Special Education.
  • I am deathly allergic to nuts (trail food will be interesting!).
  • I am a certified zip line guide.
  • Taylor Swift is my spirit animal.
  • I am never not craving cheese dip.
  • I have seen every episode of The Office more times than I care to admit.
  • I am the luckiest girl in the world to be married to my best friend, who is willing to go on this crazy, life-changing adventure with me.


Fun Facts about Josh:

  • I am married to the most beautiful/loving/passionate woman in the world!
  • I have an undergraduate degree in psychology (I know, what do you do with that?!), and I have a job I love.
  • I have the most solid friend group (long live the VIII).
  • Pizza is my all-time favorite food.
  • I tend to be obsessive about something once I have it in my sights, so I have a lot of hobbies that I’m below average at.
  • I bought an 80’s van and renovated it into a camper-van (see the above bullet point).
  • LOST is my favorite show of all time. I’ve seen it 4 times, and it is NOT purgatory.
  • I sometimes like to think I can freestyle rap.


If you made it to this point in the blog post, I’m sorry for what you just went through- but thanks for toughing it out! But seriously, thanks for taking the time to read this and we GREATLY look forward to sharing our adventure with you all.


With Love,

The Stones


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Comments 13

  • Lori : Jan 20th

    I envy both of you…looking forward to every post. Safe travels & have the time of your lives…(and call your moms often!!!!!)
    Much love to you both

  • MICHELE Monsrud : Jan 20th

    Miranda. And fortunately I have not had the pleasure of meeting you in person but your mom and I were best friends in the middle and high school. I truly love your mom to death and I think the world of Je and fortunately I have not had the pleasure of meeting you in person but your mom and I were best friends in the middle and high school. I truly love your mom to death and I think the world of Gene. I see your free spirit, and that crazy mom of yours that I grew up with. I’m incredibly proud of you and your husband as you guys embark on this amazing journey. Life is incredibly short and it’s a beautiful gift that we have been given to live it. I pray for Godspeed and safety. Seize the moment and I hope to meet you when you return to Georgia. Much love MICHELE Monsrud

    • MICHELE Monsrud : Jan 20th

      Miranda, I promise I’m not ‘that” stupid, I just read my post after sending it and OMG.. That is what I get for voice messaging.. Lol… Hopefully you can Interpret my gibberish ..

  • Tammy McGaha : Jan 20th

    So sweet Michelle. Thank you! And I got every word you said. Lol. We can live vicariously through their journey. Love you girl.

  • Seth "The Blaided Bowen" Ferron : Jan 20th

    Stoked for you guys! Can’t wait to follow along on your journey! Be sure to make some stops in Virginia and Massachusetts! Long Live the VII!

  • Kelsey Tucker : Jan 21st

    Hope to meet you guys on the trail!

  • Bill & Cliffene Stone : Jan 21st

    Josh & Miranda, two beautiful, most well matched couple, whom we love dearly. We are sooo excited about the adventure you are about to embark upon but PLEASE be careful & remember that your Nanny & PawPaw are praying for you & we look forward to following your blog. God has blessed us with beauty beyond measure – always remember Who put it all there for us to enjoy. HAVE A BALL!!

  • Kathy Emory : Jan 21st

    Miranda and Josh , to my niece and her sweet husband I have very proud of the both of you and I hope that you all have a safe and rewarding journey! We Love the both of you to the moon and so happy that you are able to to this exciting adventure in life . We will keep you all in our prayers to be safe . Can’t wait to see pictures and to follow your blog. HAVE A AWESOME TRIP TO THE LAND OF BEAUTIFUL ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

  • Becca : Jan 21st

    You guys sound GREAT! Super excited to follow your journey!!

  • Terry Gandy : Jan 22nd

    Hey, Josh & Maranda. Nice start to a great blog. Early Childhood Education and Psychology, huh? Well, you’ll have plenty of subjects on the Trail, starting with me! I start in March, too. I hope to see you on the Trail! Have fun!!

  • Lori Weiler : Jan 26th

    I am so excited for you both! What a TRULY AMAZING adventure you are about to begin! Most people only talk about doing things like this….so glad you guys are taking life by the horns and are actually doing it! This journey will be something you treasure for the rest of your lives! And who knows what the future holds after this life changing journey! I just know you both will be forever enriched!

    Breath in EVERY moment! Safe travels! Looking forward to following along!
    God Bless you both!

  • grandma : Jan 27th

    sooooo you are really gonna do this…well hooray for you all!!!! you will always have great memories from this adventure…we will read your blog every day…please be safe and know that we love you …g-ma and g-pa

  • grandma : Jan 27th

    oh and another thing…as granny great always said and now i do too…TRAVELIN’ MERCIES!!!!


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