Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Challenge #4.9 - Where in the World is the Gross Family?

Alright family, here is the last photo challenge of this series. Congratulations Gena on correctly identifying all of Gracie's locations! I really think you might secretly be a PI. You're a little too good at this! And Damon, Gracie did visit both Pat's and Geno's (I thought of putting both pics in), but the photo is at Geno's; the orange table is the only distinguishing part. 

Enough about that challenge. Onto Reagan, Abe, and Brett! This photo was taken on July 2, 2010. I thought about making that the only clue, mostly to test out my Gena PI theory, but that would't really be fair to anyone else. So here is your final clue. The Wittig Fam is visiting the leading recreational aviation convention. Okay Gross Family, challenge on!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Challenge #4.8 - Where in the World is the Gross Family

This post is all about Gracie! I really liked how the Carissa/Mom post used a chain of logic and only the photos as clues, so I've decided to follow suite here. I'm looking for specific locations, pretty much as specific as you can get. So far I think our family has shown our ability to be stalker-ish-ly accurate with the whole citing of locations thing; I'm ready to see that magic worked once again! (Hint: These are all from the same trip.)

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Challenge #4.7 - Where in the World are Debbie, Pete, Julia, and Bill

Scotland/ Ireland edition once again! I think this is the last from "Way Northern England." (By the way, that was your first clue.) This location is a type of Bronze Age circular tomb cairn near the "Mouth of the River Ness". Much like many stone circles, this one also marks the winter solstice. One more hint, it's not Stonehenge!

Mom also sent another challenge, this one in the form of a question:

What did #s 3, 7, 8 & 9 have for dinner that is made of beef suet, pork blood, vegetable fat, oatmeal, onions, salt & spices? 

Feel free to puzzle over one or both of these challenges! Also, congrats to Damon, again, for correctly naming both locations in yesterday's post. I give style points to Teri; your answer sounded a lot cooler! 

Friday, August 26, 2011

Challenge #4.6 - Where in the World is the Gross Family?

Our family is so in-synch (not to be confused with N* Sync... I know we're not a boy band.) What I'm referring to are the following pictures, submitted by Debbie (Mom) and Carissa. The picture from Mom showcases one of her most recent tourist stops. The picture from Carissa is quite a bit older, depicting a tourist spot from several years ago. Both pictures are of similar locales, only they are 3,426 miles apart. Carissa's photo has a pretty good clue... I think both locations can be worked from there.

P.S. We're about to get hit with our third major geological/ weather-related catastrophe in just over a week. For those of you keeping track: 1) massive hail storm last Thursday resulting in almost $5,000 in damage between both of our cars (thank you insurance); 2) 5.9 magnitude earthquake and accompanying after shocks; 3) hurricane Irene. I can't elaborate on the last one, but I anticipate a pretty hefty power outage. If the site goes dark for a few days, I'll be sure to update with the last picture submissions as soon as we're brought back to the 21st century!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Challenge #4.5 - Where in the World are Debbie, Pete, Julia, and Bill

Thanks for the awesome picture Gena!! I will give you the honors of revealing the location and the winner.

Based on the high level of competition recently displayed on the GFCB, I have decided to make this next photo challenge even more "challenge-y." Or "challenging" for those "in-the-box-thinkers" or "rule-followers" or "possible-English-enthusiasts." I know "challenge-y" isn't a real word... Okay, enough self-banter. The picture!

This again comes from the raucous travels of our loving members abroad. It's not Downton Abbey (look it up... this show is hysterical and my Carissa's new obsession!) The structure is over 600 years old, and most of the renovations through the 1700s are in the "Scottish vernacular" style. Now, I know some of you are saying, "Stop, no more! You've told us too much already and now I have to scramble to be the first one to answer so I can impress everyone with my knowledge of 18th century Scottish architecture!" For that reason, I'm hesitant to provide you with this last clue. But I already thought of it, so here goes. The name of the castle is famously linked to Macbeth as a surprising title bestowed upon the main character. Your welcome Shakespeare aficionados! 

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Challenge #4.4 - Where in the World is the Gross Family?

So, in case you haven't heard, an earthquake hit northern Virginia this afternoon! It was very exciting (well, sort of... as exciting as three minutes of rumbling can be), so I'm using that as my excuse for not posting earlier. And don't worry family, Gena can't answer this one! I say that with all the love in the world for Gena, and a great big thanks for her submission of the following picture.

Your clue: This location is not traditionally in an earthquake zone, but it has felt it's fair share of aftershocks over the years. As a matter of fact, there were reports of residents feeling tremors from today's earthquake even though this location is close to 700 miles from the epicenter. The last earthquake to hit this location directly was in 1947, but even though it was the largest reported, the magnitude was not recorded.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Challenge #4.3 - Where in the World are Debbie, Pete, Julia, and Bill

Here's your next location Gross Family! This one appears in video format for the simple reason that Mom had her camera on "video" instead of "picture." But I think it's a nice change-up for our third mystery spot. This landmark is located on the Royal Mile (hooray for me because that's also the name of my favorite Scottish pub in DC!) And, it's the Mother Church of Presbyterianism; doesn't that sound fancy! Again, no members of the Gross Family actually appear in this post, so you'll just have to trust that Debbie, Pete, Julia, and Bill were actually there.

Please send any pictures you have of members of our family in interesting places. They don't have to be far off lands... anywhere in the world, including Wisconsin, is great!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Challenge #4.2 - Where in the World are Debbie, Pete, Julia, and Bill

Recently four members of the Gross family jetted off to the British Isles for two weeks of pubs, foggy shorelines, and sheep. Though no members of the Gross family actually appear in the picture below (typical of the four travelers), it does showcase one of their recent locations. The picture is the only clue, but try to be as specific as possible when pinpointing the location!

Also, I have to announce the winner of yesterday's photo hunt (even though there wasn't really going to be a winner). I was super impressed with the speed of Gena's entry, the sisterly intuition of Carissa's and Jenny's entries, and the accuracy of Damon's entry. I have to make Damon the winner because he found the actual location of the picture,  O'Rielly's Irish Pub, just a block down from our Frankfurt hotel. Congrats!!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Challenge #4 - Where in the World is the Gross Family?

Because we are a family of travelers, and because at this very moment a few of our family travel agents are gallivanting abroad, I've decided to start a string of challenges! I plan on changing the challenge picture frequently, so if you'd like to submit your own "Where in the world?" photo, I would love to add them to the challenge! The first photo is from my personal collection.

Here is your clue: Lauren and I are in the largest city in the state of Hesse. Other clues worth noting; the picture is a little blurry, it's dimly lit, and the establishment's name appears printed on the front window. Where could we be?

Submit your guess as a comment to this post. The more specific, the better. I will post a new challenge photo tomorrow!!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Challenge #3 - The Winner Is...

Okay, so as usual I'm going to ramble on for a little bit before revealing this week's challenge winner. First, a big thank you to Carissa for creating this week's prize. The bookmarks are just perfect!! I'm sure the winner will be delighted to put them to good use, even if for display purposes only. I'm not sure I'd want to risk actually using them when I read.

I hope everyone enjoyed this week's challenge; I know that many of you just like to snoop at the prize follow along without actually playing. And if you're just checking in for the first time this week, here is a run-down of the entries for the 10 word book report. Bonus points to those who made them rhyme!

1. Anna - murder mystery, artistic, imagination, French, relationship scandals, naive, egocentric, stereotypes

2. Carissa - Canadian mystery
an elder hunted
abundant characters
all friendships confronted

3. Cortney - In a quiet town, there're no secrets, or a lot.

4. Julia - Idyllic town. Natural deaths or murders? Painting clues solve mystery.

5. Damon - Must make time to read this book in time. Damn…

6. Gena - Friendship

7. Debbie - Accident, murder, suicide...don't know.
Slow reader, only halfway through.

8. Pete - Easy read, murder, intrigue, suspense, artistic, French/Canadian, instructed, eh?

9. Teri - Oh my! Should have put down the kids and read!

Okay, who's was your favorite? It actually doesn't matter because there is no judgment here (at least none that I'll disclose on the site!!) Like always, your participation alone qualifies you to win the fabulous prize! This week's randomly selected winner is...

Congratulations on winning this week's challenge, and thank you to all who participated (or stalked the blog and didn't participate). I have two ideas for the next challenge, and one sort of hinges on the internet accessibility of Scotland and Ireland. I'll post the new challenge, whatever it may be, Saturday. Don't let the anticipation consume your happy Friday! 

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Challenge #3 - 10 Word Book Report

Still Life [Book]
Reminder - 12 Hours to Submit 10 Words!

Many of us have just finished Still Life by Louise Penny for the family book book club. (I'm admittedly skeptical that this is her real name, but that's outside of the scope of this challenge.) If you have never read this book, I'm giving you a one-week-and-one-day heads-up for our next challenge; it's a book report on Still Life! But fear not, the report must be given in exactly 10 words, no more, no less. Simple!

Here are a few things to keep in mind as you begin your literary nugget. The 10 words should capture the "essence" of the book, however they do not need to be strung in formal prose. The words can comprise a sentence, several phrases, or stand alone (take poetic license!) Comment on this post with your entry by Wednesday, August 17. The winner will be chosen at random and will receive a special book-themed prize created by the crafty Carissa!

Special Note - If you have not, cannot, or do not plan to read this book, simply submit your report on another tale. The only thing I ask is that you name the book and author that you choose to write about.

For those of you who need a little more incentive, I've included a picture of this week's prize: a set of genre-themed book marks created by Carissa! (That means they're awesome!)

Monday, August 8, 2011

Challenge #2 - The Winner is...

Sorry that this took a little while to post, but I'm exhausted after my first day "back" at school (class actually). I know, whah whah, I've had six beautiful weeks of rest and relaxation, so I should just stop complaining about being tired because some people have "real jobs," you know, and they have to work "all" the time... I'm stalling.

I know that many of you were interested in this week's prize, especially because it was pretty awesome. I mean, who can resist karate? I also wanted to congratulate everyone on their extremely creative posts this week! I know many of you were hesitant to participate because this challenge seemed just a little to close to work for comfort. Sorry about that, but sometimes a little effort makes a big impact :) We are a delightfully creative bunch of people, so hooray for us! I've had so much fun looking at everyone's entries. It's always fun to see the diversity of entries given one prompt. I hope you've all had a lot of fun too!

Okay, I think we're at the point where you had to scroll down to see the winner, so without further ado, or maybe just a little, here is this week's winner...

Congratulations Caleb!!

You will receive your karate tote (or ninja... still open for debate) in the mail shortly! If you didn't win this week, just think, your odds are better for next week! The new challenge will post tomorrow, and (hint) it will only require you to write 10 words. No excuses for lack of participation! And there will be an AWESOME prize thanks to Carissa. I know you're all super intrigued :)

Update - From Damon via Caleb, or Caleb via Damon

I have been asked by this week’s winner to say a few words of appreciation.  Caleb is finding it difficult to find the words necessary to convey his surprise and appreciation at winning this weeks challenge.  This mostly is due to the fact that he is not even 14 months old, so concepts such as appreciation, challenge and winning are beyond his grasp.  Also he is still trying to understand basic words and speech patterns, so verbalizing his full appreciation of to the folks at RANDOM.ORG and their fantastic random number generator programs is just not yet possible. 

I’m sure he will enjoy wearing his new prize on his head, putting pieces of it in his mouth, and generally drooling all over it.  Also, we’re excited that Caleb will soon be testing for his high white belt in “keeping it real”.  He’s been working very hard at it.

Finally, in the tradition of the first week's challenge, and with the help of the random nature of the universe (and the internet), we would like to present the runner up this week.  Congratulations to Jack at number 6, you are the runner up in this week’s Gross Family Challenge Blog Challenge.  Your prize is having a wonderful mother, a loving family, a fantastic uncle, and most importantly, an appreciation for motorcycles. 

Yes, this is a total cop-out prize.