I have a beta version if you are interested in testing it? What I did is add an inset top banner and an inset bottom banner position to the blog home page as well other pages relating to the blog. So it will show up on the blog home (all the post intros) and the single post page (full post view). I also discovered that the index.php file that I mentioned above is probably not the best solution. I did this in other files instead.
I’m not sure if I will keep these in the theme, but perhaps what I am willing to do is put the files I modified into a child theme for Encounters for you. I’m going to guess you are not using a child theme at the moment?