We just completed our fourth annual Clickin’ Moms’ Scavenger Hunt, and, as always, we had a fantastic time doing it! This is CM’s 5th year of hosting it, and I am a little bummed that I didn’t participate the first year as it’d be so cool to know we’d been there since the beginning, but I joined CM that very month, and the Scavenger Hunt seemed pretty daunting for a newbie! The second year I almost didn’t do it either, but Emily talked me into it, but by then we were more than a week into it and I just couldn’t catch up… The third year (our second try), we won first place (and we got our beloved conure that year as a direct result of the Scavenger Hunt—we adore her!)! But it was all-consuming, and I vowed never again. Last year, though, they changed the rules from the winners being the top 10 point-getters (the year we won, we found nearly 400 items!) to instead a drawing of everyone who earned 110 points or more (this year we managed 142 items—we thought that was a lucky number!), so once again Emily convinced me to go for it. We didn’t win last year, but it wasn’t nearly as intimidating and we had such a wonderful time doing it that for us the adventure was the prize, so we really didn’t care about winning. And at this point, as long as Emily is considered a “kid” (enabling me to use her for a lot of the shots so I don’t have to “borrow” kids every day to stay on top of it), we’ll stick with it. It is SUCH fun!! I really think our friends and family look forward to it each year as much as we do.
I am convinced that my mother-in-law likes it (almost) as much as we do (or at least she is very sweet about humoring us!), and despite the fact that we live nearly 2,000 miles away from each other, she and my father-in-law have participated with us for the last three years. The year we were in Minnesota during July at their house, she carted Emily and me from place to place to gather images, and she’s been in California for the last two years and has happily joined us on our jaunts around town and beyond! She’s also taken photos when Emily and I have needed to be “in” them. Here she is in “a child jumping through hoops”:
And he is, in “someone flying a kite”:
This year we got to see my sister and her family during the hunt, so we corralled them to help as well. (I am bummed that my nephew wasn’t around too, but we’ll catch him next year—they were such fun to do it with that they aren’t allowed to skip next year!). Here are “kids tasting rhubarb” (I LOVE this series!):
And my brother-in-law hula-hooping (brilliantly!!) and being an equally spectacular super-hero (he also lent me his childhood action figures!):
A “human pyramid” (another shot courtesy of my mother-in-law):
And “adults blowing bubbles”:
“Five people IN a bed”—getting five people ON a bed seemed doable, but the rule was IN a bed, so some family-familiarity seemed appropriate—LOL!
My niece totally rocking her mom’s high heels (and she looked equally awesome holding her hard-earned swimming trophy, and even planking!!):
And my younger niece equally rocking her curly rainbow clown wig (she also let us borrow her puppets for a puppet show, including the bunny puppet she used her very own money to buy!):
My beloved, wearing my brother-in-law’s bowtie (he also posed in a bubble bath for me, but I elected not to post that one here—I need to retain his enthusiasm for next year! ;-P):
We got our best friends’ and their kids in on the action, too! Here’s “playing a wind instrument”:
“Boy climbing a tree”:
And proudly (and adorably!) sporting “a messy face”:
Some dear friends let us photograph their stuff, like Lego people:
And their wedding cake topper (I adore this one because they recently celebrated their 50th anniversary, and because the little ceramic people LOOK like them! And I loved their antique camera almost as much—will need to borrow that as a prop one day…):
Emily made me things, like “a craft made of popsicle sticks”:
And “a sand castle”:
And she painted her toes the colors of the rainbow:
And she also made me laugh hysterically while she took my picture (no easy feat as I detest having my picture taken; she managed by singing really dumb songs to me):
And she buried her entire self, showing just her face, in a huge pile of stuffed animals:
But she proved she was a teenager by refusing to hit the beach with me inappropriately dressed (apparently that would be embarrassing), so my mother-in-law again took the photo:
Here are some more favorite images from this year. A sparkly stack of my sister’s bracelets:
Orange-colored bokeh (I had no idea how to do this one because we really don’t own anything orange, but on a “family date” one night, I realized the candles were orange!):
Five water balloons (which were apparently old, because we had to fill more than a dozen to get 5 that didn’t immediately pop):
During the three weeks we got to treat ourselves to Oreo cookies (and umbrella drinks, and Emily got to jump on the couch and eat cake with pink icing, after making the cake and blowing out the 5 candles!):
Here’s her messy room (and yes, it’s normally messy, but not usually THIS messy—she had been searching for a tutu for another item on the list, to no avail):
And the sunroof that I had to have finally paid off!
She set up her tent in the back yard to peek her head out of (and she also squeezed herself into the kitchen sink to be “a kid in a kitchen sink”):
And she twirled in a skirt:
And I was pleasantly surprised that I can still do a cartwheel, with not-bad form!
A starry night (I totally plan to try this again somewhere with less noise pollution (not in our back yard)):
Our most surprising find was a chuppah. We knew what it was because we adore the Gilmore Girls so much, and Luke made Lorelei a chuppah when she was about to wed Max, but we were pretty sure we wouldn’t find one. But on Friday night, we headed out to Shoreline to get the sunset, the star-jump silhouette, and maybe even the kayak (success on all three), and amazingly, a lovely couple had just wed under a chuppah at the Rengstorff house (one place we considered getting married at long, long ago)!
Here is our “view from underwater”. We weren’t sure how to interpret this one, so we just had fun with it, shooting flowers from our yard in the bathtub with the point & shoot in its underwater housing. I wish my hand wasn’t in it, but otherwise it’s cool!
And I think my favorite from the whole Hunt is this one—“a star-jump silhouette”:
There were a bunch that seemed like they’d be easy but that we were unable to get (like “a kid swimming” or “a mother feeding her baby”), and additional memorable moments (like the man in the pet store feeding the lizard a worm for us, opening my door to the our extremely sweet mailman wearing nothing but my robe with wet hair and no makeup to get his picture delivering mail, the guy at the coffee shop very kindly doing his best to make a “CM” out of the foam on a coffee drink, and getting in trouble in the movie theater for taking a picture of Emily wearing 3D glasses—but Monsters University was fantastic!)… Each summer the Scavenger Hunt encourages us to get out and do stuff we might otherwise not make the time for, like a taking day trip to Santa Cruz, flying a kite, looking for tadpoles in a pond, or making Jello and learning to suspend a plastic toy in it, and for that we are deeply grateful. We had a wonderful three weeks, as always, and are already looking forward to next year’s Hunt! Thank you, Clickin’ Moms!