Well, my friends. Despite the heat . . . despite damaging storms . . . despite personal challenges . . . despite the (ahem) news of the day . . . we are having ourselves a Summer Vibes kind of summer. At least, based on the stories you’ve shared with me so far as part of the Summer Vibes Scavenger Hunt we are!

I want to thank all of you who are playing along with me here on the Scavenger Hunt . . . for letting me know which items you “found” in June, for sharing your stories and your photos and your creativity in “interpreting” the list items (which, really, is part of the fun).

I’m pleased to announce that Karel (who I also happen to know personally as a real-life friend here in Kalamazoo) is the June Summer Vibes Scavenger Hunt winner!!!!

Karel . . . amassed the greatest number of Scavenger Hunt points in June by “completing” (finding? experiencing? I’m never sure what we’re actually doing here . . . ) 9 of the 10 items on the June list. (The only thing Karel didn’t do was “drive or ride in an unconventional vehicle” — and I happen to know she had a great idea for that one, so maybe she’ll tick that box off yet this summer.) Karel submitted this photo, creatively demonstrating how she accomplished several items on the list in one go . . . she’s eating breakfast outside – which she considers a “public garden” since she “lives in a fishbowl” – while wearing her favorite sunglasses with bright blue toenails (creative pedicure thanks to painter’s tape . . . ), with a whimsical owl sitting on her breakfast tray. (Trust me, she got some “style points” for putting all that together in one fun photo.) Karel also visited the farmer’s market (where she purchased some of the flowers you can see on her deck), did a lot of summer reading, and watched a summer blockbuster movie from days of yore . . . The Big Chill. (As Karel points out, I didn’t say it had to be a current summer blockbuster. Which is exactly how I hoped that clue would be interpreted.) Karel also enjoyed a “classic” summer ice cream treat, which – for her – means eating ice cream directly from the carton with a spoon. (You can see that photo in the gallery below.)

So please join me in congratulating our Vibe-iest Viber for June . . . Karel!

Other notable participants and runners-up (who will also be awarded prizes):

  • Dee was the very first participant in the Summer Vibes Scavenger Hunt, so my special thanks to Dee for getting things off to a great start.
  • Pam got the most style points with her story and description of the best ice cream treat in Quebec City. If any of you visit Quebec, be sure to seek out Chocolat Favoris for a special treat. (Pam says not to be fooled by the online photos that look like they serve those dipped cones you might find at Dairy Queen. She adds that it was NOT a Dairy Queen dip cone . . . ¬†it was “a revelation.”)
  • Sarah got the most photo points – and I especially loved her whimsical “tush-room.”

Although there are no prizes for second place, I will tell you that it was a super tight race . . . with Carole, Suzanne, Pam, Sarah, and Linda battling it out for a very close second.

So. Now we’re on to the July list (which will also be posted today). While there will be a July winner (for amassing the most July points), please keep in mind that there will also be an OVERALL winner for the entire summer. So that means that . . . if you got a slow start, you can still catch up! You can still submit your stories and photos for June list items in July and those points will count toward your overall summer total.

I hope you’ll enjoy some Summer Vibes by playing along in July!

And . . . here’s a little rundown of (most of) the photos I received in June. (I’m only including the photos if I received express permission to publish them.) My thanks to Carole, Karel, Sarah, Pam, and Dee for granting me that permission.