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Friday, December 12, 2014

CAT FRIDAY: The best gifts of 2014 for the cats in your life

Posted By on Fri, Dec 12, 2014 at 1:59 PM

Whether you are the master servant of one cat or many, the holidays are all about them, too. (Duh.) But like many cat lovers, the buying of special goodies and treats is something that you frequently cave to year-round. There's nothing cuter or more rewarding than watching your little fur babies go nuts over a fresh, new catnip kicker, right? But when they eventually lose interest, and you tuck the old, forgotten toys away in some dusty basket in a corner, the realization hits of just how stupidly spoiled your cats actually are. The problem arises for me every year: What to get the cat who has everything, and doesn't need a damn thing? Here's my recommendations for cats at all levels of spoiled.

KitNip Box Subscription

Subscription-based "loot" boxes are huge for all interests right now, from pets to video gamers to beauty-product hoarders. Though I've never personally tried this specific service, my all-cats Instagram feed seems to always showcase cats' positive reactions to the product selection that comes each month in their kitties' KitNipBox. Two subscription packages are offered at $19 and $29/month, with the higher cost catering more to multiple-cat households. Boxes include goodies like treats, toys, grooming products and more. It's a great way to stock up on tasty kitty treats, and introduce newness and excitement to your cats' life each month. • $19-$29 •

SlimCat Interactive Feeder

Though some think fat cats are just the cutest, cuddliest little creatures ever, pet obesity is a big deal, with nearly half the cat population estimated to be over a healthy weight. If you have a chubby furry friend, an interactive feeder can help them trim down by making meal time more like a mind puzzle and a game that gets them active rather than a scarfing speed race at the food bowl. Put part of your cats' recommended, daily food allowance in here, or a couple of treats, and make them do a little more work for it. • $6.29 •

Feliway products can be a miracle solution to many stress-related behaviors cats exhibit — fear of new places, going to the vet, riding in the car or leaving the house in general, and meeting a new fur-sibling (or a human sibling, for that matter). It might not seem like a "fun" gift, but your cat will appreciate it next time there's a trip to the groomers or boarder. The odorless product uses a replicated pheromone that cats naturally produce and mark their environment with when they're happy. Every time your kitty is rubbing his/her face on you, or something in your home, he/she is depositing these pheromones, undetectable by humans. Find the Feliway line at most pet stores and vet clinics. It comes in a plug-in diffuser, spray and wipe form. • $49.99/diffuser kit •

Energy Pyramid Cat House

Give your kitty a funky, stylish place to recharge and find solitude in the form of this quirky kitty pyramid. May he/she have sweet dreams of being worshiped as a cats once were during the ancient Egyptians' rule, when cats were considered holy beings for protecting grain storage from rodent pests. This pyramid is lined with a scratch-friendly surface, and would be even cozier if stuffed with a soft bed or blanket. • $32 •

Cat Canoe Bed

Finding the perfect cat bed for your kitty can be seriously challenging. Really. Some cats love covered beds, other cats won't touch them, preferring to lay on every other human-designated surface in the house. This particular model seems to offer the same cozy feel that many hooded or covered kitty beds offer, but in a more claustrophobia-friendly design. The tapered sides create a warm, nest-like embrace around a snoozing cat's body, while also giving an open view to see and hear all that's going on as they snuggle. • $29.95 •

The Furminator
While also more of a necessity than a "fun" Christmas gift for your cat, it's a purchase you'll thank yourself for making come spring when that thick winter coat starts loosening and covering your house in cat fur. I personally swear by this tool. The brush teeth are designed to hit where all that loose fur is coming from, underneath your cats' shiny, silky top coat. After a good five minutes of brushing, you'll wonder how it was even possible your cat had that much fur to begin with. • $42.99 •

Meow-y Christmas!
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Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Good Job, Spokane — we're on another top-10 list

Posted By on Tue, Dec 9, 2014 at 5:22 PM


It recently popped up on our Facebook feed that Spokane has made another "top U.S. city" listicle. This time, we've landed at the No. 7 spot on a list of 10 "Underrated cities that deserve some love," falling ahead of Baltimore, Newark and... Austin, Texas. 

We're not sure what the criteria for this list was other than just some blogger's personal opinion. The list was posted on Resignation Media's blog The Chive, which pegs itself as "the best lifestyle brand in the world." Basically, all you need to know is that it's just another one of those viral-repost, click-bait-y websites. 

The blog author got a few things wrong, though: 

"Eight hometown breweries, 36 bars, and Washington’s first craft liquor distillery, Spokane is definitely a place to add to your list. Surrounded by beautiful Washington forests, you can find yourself white water rafting, golfing, hiking, touring breweries, and taking the charlift to the top of the mountains all in the same day. A beautiful spot with an awesome nightlife, and a heavy emphasis on local, craft alcoholic beverages, Spokane is totally worth a visit."

According to our tally, based on the most recent compilation in the Inlander's 2014 Annual Manual, the Spokane area in general (including Spokane Valley and Airway Heights) has WAY more than eight breweries. According to that list, there's nearly twice that many, at 15, just in Spokane County, and at least another 10 more located throughout the Inland Northwest region, including Sandpoint, Moscow/Pullman and Coeur d'Alene.

Also, after on a quick search of the Inlander's massive database of restaurants, we found more than 68 locations tagged with the word "bar" in downtown Spokane alone, which includes restaurants with full bars, clubs, and most other alcohol-serving establishments.  

But hey, it's always cool when Spokane is rightly recognized for its awesomeness, and gets lumped in with cities much bigger than us. It means we're catching people's attention. Good job, Spokane. 

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FASHION: Former Spokane artist starts casual, athletic clothing line

Posted By on Tue, Dec 9, 2014 at 1:03 PM

Georgie Wear creators Danielle Hatch (left) and Meikel Reece (right)
  • Georgie Wear creators Danielle Hatch (left) and Meikel Reece (right)

When she grew tired of throwing on boring sweats on her way to work after exercising, former Spokane resident Danielle Hatch — now in Houston — began taking the comfy materials found in workout clothes and creatively piecing them together.

"The Downtown Dress" by Georgie Wear - VAUSMA
  • Vausma
  • "The Downtown Dress" by Georgie Wear

Georgie Wear products cater to a demographic of active women who don't feel the need to get all dolled up to transition from sweating it out at the gym to the rest of their daily activities. With backgrounds in fitness and art — she's a former member of Saranac Art Projects — Hatch gathered inspiration from her varying interests. Partnering with her husband, the idea for Georgie won the Rice University Jones School Owl Tank Business Plan Competition this year. 

Like many modern entrepreneurs, Hatch and business partner Meikel Reece — friends since they were co-captains of their high school volleyball team — are using Kickstarter to raise $20,000. If they meet their goal, that money will go to a first run of Georgie clothing and an e-commerce site.

Based on the size of their pledge, backers of Georgie Wear on Kickstarter will have the option to pre-order products, such as various skirts and dresses. 

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Friday, December 5, 2014

And we have a winner in our "Selfie with our Selfie Cover" contest ...

Posted By on Fri, Dec 5, 2014 at 4:23 PM

On Wednesday we came up with the idea of having readers send in selfies of themselves taken with our selfie-inspired cover for reporter Daniel Walters' excellent story about Millennials — you should really go read that right now if you haven't yet. 

I mulled the entries with Art Director Chris Bovey, he being of discerning taste and undeniable artistic talent, and we chose our favorite of the lot. It came from Samantha Castle, who one-upped our idea by sending in a selfie of herself kissing another selfie of herself — the one that made its way onto the cover of our new issue! Kudos, Samantha, well done, and congrats on winning a $25 gift card to Flying Goat. 

Here's a shot of Samantha's winning selfie: 


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Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Selfie-centered: Are you on our cover this week? Plus: Win a prize for your photo

Posted By on Wed, Dec 3, 2014 at 12:04 PM


To go with our story all about Millennials on the cover this week and hitting the streets Thursday, we felt it fitting to let you make the cover. So, in the course of one week, hundreds of selfies streamed in (my fave being just a hand flipping the bird). You get extra credit if you can find the one non-Millennial on the cover. 

But we're not finished. One lucky Inlander reader will claim a $25 gift card to the Flying Goat just for taking a selfie with our new cover in the photo. So grab a copy of the new issue, take a quick pic and send your selfie to us via email at [email protected] We'll pick a winner and post it online on Friday. Selfie away!
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Monday, December 1, 2014

WHAT'S UP TODAY? SFCC fall concert, Sandpoint jams and reindeer visits

Posted By on Mon, Dec 1, 2014 at 11:05 AM

So you survived the long Thanksgiving weekend full of family and feasting, yet you're still hankering to get out and about and show the cold weather who's boss? Good for you! You'll find plenty of options to step away from your computer on so-called Cyber Monday in our extensive event listings and Staff Picks

If you're too hungover, er, tired to peruse all those listings, here are some highlights for Monday, Dec. 1: 

MUSIC EVENTS & CONCERTS | The Spokane Falls Community College Symphony Orchestra hosts its annual fall concert Monday at 7 pm, offering a fine way to wind down from the weekend while supporting local musicians under the direction of Shelley Rotz. 

COMMUNITY | Santa only visits on weekends at Ritter's Garden & Gift, but his reindeer hang out all week for kids to meet, and it's free. We all love free entertainment during the holiday season, correct? 

LIVE BANDS | If you're over Sandpoint way, make your way to Eichardt's in the evening for some tasty grub and the regular Monday Night Jam with Truck Mills
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Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Tiffany Patterson and gumdrops!

Posted By on Wed, Nov 26, 2014 at 11:21 AM


BEHIND THE COVER: This week's holiday-inspired cover comes from local artist Tiffany Patterson. We asked her what she loves about Christmas time:

"The holidays held so much magic for me as a child. It seemed fitting to imagine all the wonderful events this season being witnessed through the eyes of a little girl. I grew up in a Weimaraner family, but through truly lovely friends have come to know the charm of Pugs. Christmas sweaters and snorting tiny dogs seemed to go wonderfully with drooling over candied covered houses and enthusiastically hurling yourself down fluffy snow covered mountains."
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WHAT'S UP TODAY? The Grinch and Star Anna arrive in Spokane

Posted By on Wed, Nov 26, 2014 at 10:31 AM

It's Thanksgiving Eve, and that means it's a mid-week chance to rage, full-on. Or at least get out of the house. We have a ton of event listings always at your disposal, as well as Staff Picks chosen by our in-house professionals. No time to poke around? We can help. 

Here are some things worth considering for Wednesday, Nov. 26: 

THEATER | How the Grinch Stole Christmas: The Musical opens its Spokane run Wednesday night, and seems a fine way to get into the spirit of hanging with more family than you'd prefer on Thanksgiving. You can read a bit more about the production in our story on holiday shows

LIVE BANDS | Seattle's Star Anna is here to spend a couple night at Jones Radiator, so if you can't catch her Wednesday, consider a stop after downing some turkey on Thursday. Here's our interview with the young rocker, and here's a bit of what you can expect: 

KARAOKE | Open mic with T & T for all you aspiring musicians at Geno's, on a night when the audience will likely be friendlier and/or more drunk than a typical Wednesday. 
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Tuesday, November 25, 2014

WHAT'S UP TODAY? Visions of Nepal and a Griswold family Christmas

Posted By on Tue, Nov 25, 2014 at 10:09 AM

Happy Tuesday, people! There's a lot happening in our neck of the woods, judging by our event listings and carefully curated Staff Picks. If you haven't had a chance to peruse the options, let us lend a hand. 

Here are some highlights from our listings for Tuesday, Sept. 25: 

WORDS | Auntie's is hosting a little conversation and slide show by Ric Conner, co-owner of Ganesh Himal Trading, called "Looking Back, Looking Forward: A Retrospective Slide Presentation Celebrating 30 Years of Fair Trade in Nepal." It's a long name for what is sure to be a cool look at the Himalayan country. 

KARAOKE | Got relatives in town, and the need to get them out of the house for a little while? Karaoke is a good way to delay any holiday drama, and you can get your singing on at Underground 15 Tuesday night. 

FILM | The Totally Tubular Tuesday film selection this week at the Garland Theater is the under-appreciated National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. The third installment of the Chevy Chase vehicle is better than the second and the fourth, and introduced Juliette Lewis to the world before she went all bad-ass in her rock band and Natural Born Killers. Here's a look at a fine way to kick off the Christmas season on the cheap: 

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Monday, November 24, 2014

WHAT'S UP TODAY? Canadian power-pop, cruising carolers and community concerts

Posted By on Mon, Nov 24, 2014 at 10:35 AM

A short holiday week means a lot of us have some extra days off to play with, along with visiting family and friends getting ready for the Thanksgiving gorging. What a perfect time to peruse our extensive event listings and Staff Picks for something to do to keep everyone entertained and happy! 

Here are some of the highlights for Monday, Nov. 24: 

LIVE BANDS | Tonight The Bartlett is hosting the Vancouver, B.C., trio The Courtneys, delivering some uber-tasty guitar pop, along with Loomer and Friends of Mine for what should be a fine way to launch your week. Here's a little taste of The Courtneys: 

COMMUNITY | If you're in Coeur d'Alene this evening, take a quick Journey to the North Pole, a 40-minute holiday cruise that will give you the kind of look at the town's holiday lights that you just can't get from solid ground. 

MUSIC EVENTS & CONCERTS | Spokane Falls Community College is hosting its annual fall Community Concert, under the direction of Karl Mote. 
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