Wednesday, December 21, 2016


Faux Fur Ankle Boots from Zara (119S)
... and thank you. And thank goodness Zara is way cheaper at home because I got these babies at 59€ yesterday! (Cue the flamenco dancer emoji)

- Ane

Monday, December 19, 2016

Cyber Monday Turn Of Events & Reflecting On It

Kaixo everyone,

Remember that beautiful tote I was supposed to get... Well LOL. Lilly Pulitzer used clickbait yet again. I honestly do not know how I was that weak to fall for it. I was not particularly enchanted with anything (still not enchanted with any of the new stuff either), but seeing *FREE* in flashing lights and all the hype in different Lilly Facebook groups, I fell to it. And as many others, I did not receive the tote.

Now, the tote was a mystery gift offered at 12pm Eastern Time and was going on for an hour. I ordered it at 23:05 Central Time, yet I received a pair of earrings. They are definitely pretty, but neither what I wanted nor what I expected. I did have some exchanges with Customer Service (including one with a rather rude representative) on the topic, and well, since the package arrived two weeks late, the only thing I had to ask the representative was to avoid marking which present we would be getting and just referring to it as a mystery gift.

At first I was mad, but then I started to reflect on it and I felt really ungrateful and mean. Why would I be mad that a free present was not the one that I wanted? A family could've bought dinner with the money I spent. I could have donated that money to charity. I could have saved it up for a future project. I bought a phone case and got a free wine tote and free earrings. I didn't get a bag, but I have similar bags that I use and could use instead. Heck I have a ton of earrings!

There were many angry ladies on those Lilly Facebook pages, including myself. However, this incident will not change the course of my life, and it has given me some perspective. Objects are not everything, which is difficult to forget when you live in such a capitalistic society. A tote won't change my life or make it happier. Coffee with friends, a chat with the fam and other everyday moments 100% make up for it.

Plus I'm not that into flamingos anyway. ;)


- Ane

Monday, November 28, 2016

Cyber Monday Success!

Kaixo everyone,

I could elaborate a post about why I haven't posted since April, but I'd rather let y'all know how successful my Cyber Monday was this year! Last year, I got this beautiful Tory Burch wallet that I have been using non-stop since with an almost 30% discount from Bloomingdales:

Similar here

This year, I did not WANT to spend any money, as I had done some damage the week before in a day-trip to Chicago. However, the unthinkable happened. Two unthinkable things, actually:

1) Tory Burch 30% off: As per usual, the Tory Burch webpage sale was supposed to be applied to everything except for the coveted pieces that pretty much everyone has: The Miller sandals, the Minnie sandals, etc. are NEVER included. Like never ever.  During their Black Friday week deals, the lady at the Chicago store told me that the Light Oak Minnies were not included in the spend 250$, get 30% off sale.

However, this time it said "select colors not included." Also, this time it was 30% off no matter the price range, so I was going to get some earrings. Nevertheless, I was curious about those "select colors." I added the Minnie Light Oak flats to the shopping basket, added the code and... HOLY MOLLY! 70$ off! I have been coveting this particular shoe and color for quite some time, and suddenly, the doors opened. These shoes were not included in the birthday 50$ off deal, so I took a deep breath, and took the plunge. These babies are on my way! :D

Find them here

2) Lilly Pulitzer Cyber FunDay: I'm not gonna lie. Lilly Pulitzer has been letting me down for quite some time. I do not think it has to do with the prints, they are darling, but I think my style is evolving to something a little more demure and less wild. These shifts in style happen to everyone, and I am sure that this will change in a couple of months. Also, it is too damn cold for resort weather in Illinois. No 365 days of summer up here, ya feel? (I would like to take this opportunity to plead Lilly for actual winter clothes, thanks pink gods, xo)

Their Cyber Monday promotion in the last years has been a different gift with purchase every hour. I knew from checking in different Lilly Pulitzer Facebook groups that this year there would be 3 gifts during the day, but while studying at the library, I kept seeing that they were doing that promotion + extra hourly gifts. Nothing was particularly convincing, maybe an iPhone 6s case? Earrings? None of the gifts with purchase seemed to be worthy, though. UNTIL midnight EST. Mystery gift, and I'm here like huh? Luckily, the groups mentioned before were fast. I read "Gimme Some Leg," added the following phone case:

Buy it here
Got this wine tote and...

And finally looked at the mystery gift. What could it be? Gimme Some Leg, it must have been the new color way. So I copy-pasted the code of the mystery gift on Google and...

Y'ALL. THIS BAD B*TCH. FO FREE. No 68$, but 0 dollars. FO SHO I GOT IT. The time is unfortunately up for you to get it, but if you don't want to miss out, you can purchase it here.

I am really happy I was so successful this year, and I hope next year will top it off! As for my absence, I will fully explain it in a post (hopefully) soon. Many things (mostly good :D) have happened these months, and I cannot wait to let you all know.

All the best,

- Ane

Tuesday, April 19, 2016


Suede sandals from Roger Vivier (1325$)
And this is me, trying to pretend I have a bottomless bank account or a finance analyst husband.

- Ane

Sunday, April 17, 2016

OOTD: When You Go South, Wear Lilly

While Chicago was cold, my first trip to the South was nice and warm! It was also humid and we had downpours (hence the crazy hair and in some of the pics) but still nothing better than some nice sun and warmth for the soul with all the country music. Yes, I finally visited Nashville! And let me tell you, it was awesome! I loved the ambiance, the colors, the music, the food and the history! Since I was venturing below the Mason Dixon line, where Lilly abounds, I decided to rock my new Colie top in Multi Stems. I absolutely LOVE this top. It's a white v-neck (my go to), it has pink, the print is bold and fun and it's Lilly. 

Cardigan: JC Penney (ancient, similar here) // Top: Lilly Pulitzer // Jeans: Uniqlo // Sneakers: Converse // Vest: GAP (similar here) // Sunglasses: BP. // Bag: Tory Burch (old style, similar here) // Bracelet: J. Crew (similar here) // Watch: Fossil (similar here)

 It truly was the simplest outfit, but it felt so right. I felt bold as a flamingo yet composed and elegant, particularly with my other eBay find my Tory Burch Amanda logo bag, and with my new sunglasses I got in Nordstrom. When trying sunglasses on, I honestly asked my mom: "Which makes me look like a femme-fatale boss-ass bitch?" and then I bought them. I should have taken a resting bitch-face pic for you all to see but oh well, I was TOO HAPPY to be in Nashville with my loved ones! :)

So now tell me, what is your go to outfit for visiting the South? And if you are from there, how prevalent (or not) is Lilly? Let me know!

- Ane

Thursday, April 14, 2016

OOTD: Baby It's Cold Outside


How is the weather so bad and cold? UGH why is winter back? At least I wish I were in Chicago with my family. Like I said some weeks ago, my family came to visit for Spring Break! While I will recap the trip another day, let me share my cold day outfit that I wore in Chicago! :)

Coat: Zara (old) // Jeans: Uniqlo // Shoes: Converse // Bag: Lefties (old, similar here, which I actually ended up getting!) // Scarf: Tory Burch (old, similar here) // Sunglasses: Ray-Ban // Bracelet: J. Crew (old, similar here)

When I'm out and about in the cold, particularly in a big city, I like to steer away from puffer coats and wear more structured pieces, like this coat from Zara. It was love at first sight, and let me tell you, I didn't buy it at first and I almost lost my chance when we couldn't find it anywhere, but a store in my area (one of 5) *might* have had it in my size, and praise the lord they did! For walking, I also choose comfy footwear (aka my beaten up white Converse) and the best jeans in the world! Finally, I usually wear an oversized scarf, and what a great opportunity it was to show my great eBay score from Tory Burch! :)

What do you wear for cold days in the city? Let me know in the comments!

- Ane

Sunday, April 3, 2016

*Artsy* or how I recreated a Pinterest project

Kaixo everyone!

I have been wanting to share my first craft from Pinterest *cue the excitement* that I completed during the weekend after Valentine's Day. All my friends left for Chicago so I had the apartment all for myself. I took that weekend off to watch movies and be creative, so I took up this Pinterest project and made it mine!


You will need the following materials:
- Mason Jars
- Acrylic paint tubes of the color of your choice
- A painting brush
- Flowers

I got all of this at Hobby Lobby except for the brush, which I got in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The instructions were pretty simple in the original blog I read it, but I gotta say, it was not as easy as I would have thought!

The tube colors I chose were pink, yellow and green, which go perfectly well with the new wall decorations we have in our living room. The first thing I did was to squirt a third of the tubes into the mason jars. Once this was done, I put back the lids and shook the jars like shake weights. This way, instead of painting the outside, the paint goes inside for a nicer, glossier finish.

I thought that a third would be more than enough, but it turned out not to. There were many spots unpainted, so I decided to get the brush and start applying more paint.

With the brush and squeezing a little more paint inside the jars, I got to cover all the surface of the glass from the inside. The next step then, was to put the mason jars upside down to dry without the lids. I put many layers of paper that came with the mason jars for the excess paint to fall on them.

The original craft mentioned that the paint inside would be dry overnight, but alas! It took one week to dry, which I think is because I basically ended up using the entire tube for perfect coverage of the jars. So lastly, I bend the long stem of the flowers (which are fake) and put them inside the jars, and ta-da!

The project turned out to be very cute and inexpensive, and now graces our poor grad student living room! I chose not to get real flowers because that would mean getting a setting spray for the paint not to dissolve with water, and that could happen regardless of the use of the spray!

I am honestly very proud of this small craft. I decided to take some time for myself and doing it, and it was an awesome experience. I may take up crafting in the future! ;)

Now you tell me! Do you like arts and crafts? Have you done any particular crafts that you are proud of? Let me know!

- Ane

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Bargain Fashion Successes + Spring Break Travel Plans!

Kaixo everyone,

Long (very long) time no see! I would like to apologize for this hiatus without blogging, but school has been stressful and at night, the only free time I have for blogging, I only felt like watching some Netflix and sleeping.

This month was clearly eventful in the fashion area for me. I went back to participate with the UIUC chapter of the National Retail Federation, where I'm part of the engagement committee, but mostly, a whole new world of possibilities opened up to me via two platforms: eBay and Poshmark. I had bought things in eBay before, but I tried to steer away from bidding, as it's a binding contract, and you do not want to find yourself paying way too much for something because of the adrenaline rush to win the bid. As for Poshmark, I had heard of it before, but very vaguely. I honestly started looking once my officemate Megan told me she was actually selling some clothes, and considering the amount of clothes that I do not usually wear, I thought I may give it a try. So far I am very pleased!

My eBay bidding has been limited to a handful of things, but I usually dropped the race right when the prices started to be obnoxious. Speaking of obnoxious, for all of you Lilly fans, this Dark 'n' Stormy shift sold for almost 600$. Desperate, materialistic and unnecessary, in my opinion. It is definitely a beautiful print, but 600 dollars? Crazy.

This actually happened
Crazy. However, my success in eBay has been more economically fruitful, and waayyy cheaper! My first eBay win went as follows:

Some day in February:
- 17:00 (aprox): Oh damn that scarf... wait I posted it on my blog, it's this beauty I would wear to the library (as said here).

17:15: 25$ bid? I'm bidding. (Stays like this for two more days until the final day)

Two days later:

18:00ish: I'm grading exams, it's boring, let's see how the bidding goes. 27$? Um bid. 28$ yas.
18:50: Still same woohoo. Ends at 19:15 let's get ready.
19:05: 10 minutes, still hasn't changed.
19:10: Still same.
19:13: OMG.
19:14: 29$? OMG BACK OFF BIATCH 32$
19:15: Congratulations, you just won the Tory Burch scarf!

10 minutes and 4$ shipping later, it was coming MY WAY!!! YAYAYAYAYAYAYYYYYYY!! I fist bumped the air in the library while some people looked at me like wtf and loved my life. The times I've worn it, not only have I felt like a princess, I looked like it, and gosh it's so soft and cuddly!

Fast forward two weeks. I need a brown bag. Poshmark is offering some really nice Tory Burch bags (ugh obsessed with the brand), but they are either too expensive for a second hand bag or destroyed. eBay is offering one for bidding, pretty cheap. It was 50$ at first. And the bidding ended at 6:30am in three days.

Fast forward to 6:30am three days after, and it had come to 120, but I got it for 141$! Success!!!! I love it (it's in perfect condition), and I slept like a queen after winning that bid. While it is true that 141$ dollars for a handbag is rather pricey, the original price was 350$, and being Tory Burch, a highly coveted brand among American millennials, I believe that in the case that I would decide to sell it again, I could still get some revenue from it. It was a bargain for Tory Burch and an investment! :)

Poshmark has been a great discovery for me. As I mentioned before, I started selling my unused stuff when my friend Megan told me about it. While you really cannot make much profit (considering 20% of it goes to Poshmark and the shipping fees deter many customers), I have found it to be a very welcoming community. People share and like like crazy! While my intention was only to sell, I ended up shopping way more than I thought I would (oops). I got this NWT Lilly skort and Lululemon headband I had coveted when one of my students had it. Definitely great bargain fashion successes, considering I had not tried the skort on (perfect size, yay!) and the image for the headband was just okay.

Luckily, I have also been able to sell one thing! The Lilly for Hope bangle made for the American Cancer Society, which was my first Lilly buy ever. Unfortunately, it was too big for me, so I did not wear it much. Seeing my first Lilly piece go was somewhat sad, but I am happy to report that it ended in good hands, a recent cancer survivor! Serena, if you are reading this, you are gonna rock this bracelet! :)

If you would like to check out my Poshmark closet, feel free to do so at:


So that's my month in terms of fashion. In terms of Spring Break, which starts next Friday...


Yes, that is right, for the first time since I moved here, my parents and my sister are coming to visit me and visit some awesome places like Chicago and Nashville!!! I could not be more excited!!! While I'm pretty familiarized with the Windy City, I have never been to Nashville, so any suggestions are welcome! :)

I will have the chance to see my loved ones, travel, and hopefully get some really nice pictures for the blog! How has your life been lately? Let me know! :)

- Ane

Sunday, February 14, 2016

OOTD: Bronco Nation

Kaixo everyone,

I do not believe I have ever talked about this in my blog (I may have though, I am as repetitive as someone can get and I've told this story three times to a friend this weekend. Three times), but I am a huge Denver Broncos fan. Living in the Midwest, this is kind of odd. Being a girl from Europe, this is super odd. However, I did my study abroad in Durango, Colorado, where one of my dearest friends, Elley, instilled her love of the Broncos in me.

In fact, the last week I spent in Colorado, I got to have dinner with one of them! True story. My friend Ali's mom used to work in the hotel were they stayed before games, and she was good friends with one of them, David. She invited him to come over for dinner many times, and finally, he came when I was just visiting Ali! It really was a pleasure to meet such a cool, funny guy and hear what he had to say about being a professional football player.

David, Ali and I in June 2012
The Broncos got to the Super Bowl in 2014, which got me super excited.
If you are a football fan, you may remember was absolutely painful for the Broncos. I cried. I seriously did cry on my way home from watching. The Seahawks crushed them.

So when the Broncos made it to the Super Bowl again this year, I was ecstatic. I was definitely wary, considering how good the Panthers had been during the season. Pretty much everyone here thought the Panthers were gonna win, and only 3 of us at the party where I watched it were rooting for the Broncos. So, SURPRISE SURPRISE, THE BRONCOS WON!!!!! OMAHA, OMAHA!!!

I felt so so happy, and I felt so happy for Elley, Ali, and all my Colorado friends who were so happy about their beloved state team. In 2014 I had the cap that David signed, but this year I had it in Spain, so I got the cutest Denver Broncos tee I could've found in Easy.

Tee, AFApparel
HOW CUTE IS THIS??? A Mexican Día de los Muertos skull with the Broncos' old logo in the forehead. The Bronco is actually a skeleton! I fell in love right at the moment I saw it. But I even fell more in love when I got it on the mail. The royal blue shade was darker than expected, which I loved.

Snapchat filters on point! Follow me: anetxin91

Tank: AFApparel // Cardigan: Forever 21 // Jeans: Uniqlo // Ring: Mango (old, similar here) // Bracelet: Apricot Lane boutique // Sneakers: Converse // Handbag: Lefties (old, similar here) // Necklace: Forever 21

Even Lilly Pulitzer showed a little homage to the Broncos after winning Super Bowl 50! In love with this print!

Tell me about your Super Bowl experience! What team did you root for? Did you wear anything in particular? Let me know!


- Ane

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Surfing the Web VIII

In my Lilly Pulitzer Elsa! I'm in love with it! :)

Kaixo everyone!

I'm back after almost a week and a half long hiatus. I have had a jam-packed week with my students' exams, homework and grading, my own papers and the Super Bowl! (BRONCO NATION!!!!!!) It has been a while since I've written another installment of Surfing the Web, and even though I have only linked *gasp* four articles/posts, I believe each one of them has been very relevant for me, and I think about these topics almost in the daily:

She Divorced Me Because I Left Dishes by the Sink: Truly powerful piece on relationships and respect. Relationships are no fairy tale and many of us have found out the hard way, but it is paying attention to these things that can make a relationship prosper.

New Barbie: My childhood idol and role model has outdone herself in a way that I never imagined possible. Barbie has received SO MUCH criticism for the unattainable beauty standards that her tiny impossible figure encouraged in the young girls who played with her. While I avoided criticizing Barbie due to my eternal love for the doll, I did feel a little disappointed at the societal pressures she pushed on us women. So when I turned on my laptop and the first thing that popped up was that Barbie was getting a makeover, I smiled like I hadn't in days. Props to you Barbie, I'll be there to finally buy that Barbie who looks exactly like me! :)

The Honest Reason Why You've Never Stopped Loving Him: Another piece on relationships. You can see Valentine's Day is coming. However, this one has given me actual peace of mind, and I'm forever grateful. Whenever I thought about the happy times of my past relationships, I feared I was falling back for the person, but it really is me reminiscing a time when I felt happy and loved, and it is me longing for that sensation, not the person.

How to {Properly} Network With Bloggers: While I usually post articles I've found in different online newspapers, magazines and websites, this is the first time that I link a post by one of the bloggers I read. While I've read many useful posts on monetizing your blog and yada yada yada, for a semi-dedicated blogger like me (if I had more time I'd definitely pay more attention to it and work with it, but it's my hobby, not a job) this is not the most important aspect. My purpose when starting Basque Prep was to meet fellow bloggers and to form friendships based on common interests like fashion, pop culture and shenanigans.

When I came by this post by one of my favorite ladies, Olivia from Miss Olivia Says, I felt like I found the holy grail of blog posts about blogging. Olivia stresses that communication (good communication) is key when meeting fellow bloggers and wanting to collaborate with them: Getting to know them better, commenting (actually commenting, not just writing "I love this. Blog link" to promote yourself) and keeping in touch with those who were there when you started are the kind of advice I would truly recommend to anyone blogging. Bloggers are people like you and me, and they all appreciate support from other bloggers. When someone comments on my posts my face brightens because somebody has taken the time to read my musings. When the opposite happens, when a blogger you have been following for a long time totally ignores your comments or does not seem interested at all in your feedback, I do feel sad and unappreciated. We are all human after all.
Props to Olivia for writing such a necessary post, you rock love! :)

So this are my latest findings in the world wide web! Any article/news piece/cat video that I should check out? Let me know!


- Ane

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Valentine's Day Gifts for the Single, Easy, Breezy Covergirl that you are

Kaixo dear readers,

As the dreaded V-day approaches, singleness starts to feel heavy upon the Sargent Pepper Lonely Hearts Club Band. Snuggling with a loved one, getting flowers, a candlelit dinner, lov... Ok now, stop. Staaahhhpppp. I'm gonna be honest here right now, after my first relationship, the idea of being with somebody gives me anxiety. I really want to overcome this and find the man who will make me feel awesome and loved, but  I'm in no rush. Leaving serious topics aside, being single on Valentine's Day is actually a pretty freaking awesome thing! There are many reasons, but this are the main pros for me:

- You and your other single friends can have a ladies' night and get white-girl wasted have fun.
- You don't have to spend a dime on buying stuff for a guy. I'm sorry, but are you aware of how hard it is to buy stuff for dudes? You either buy something extremely cheap and stupid or you have to get them a new Play Station 4. No thanks.
- You don't have to worry about running to Walgreens last minute to get the corniest card.
- It's another occasion to wear as much pink as Elle Woods does and nobody will judge you. It's basically as free as Halloween for Mean Girls!
- You can wear pink and red and nobody can say the famous Spanish phrase "rosa y rojo, patada en el ojo" (basically that they don't match).
- If you are really feeling it, you can go to a cute guy (or guys) in the bar and flirt without worrying of anyone else.
- You probably will feel sad, so you can invest all the money you have not spent on a loved one ON YOURSELF.

That's right my ladies, I know you knew I would get to this conclusion but hey, some of the Valentine's Day themed clothes, accessories and others are actually super cute. Since all bloggers have decided to do a gift list for a woman, a man and the holy spirit, mine is just for you (or for me), that kick ass, single lady who needs no man to be fabulous.

Market bag: Kate Spade // Wallet: Kate Spade //  Top: Lilly Pulitzer // Scarf: Tory Burch // Teddy bear: Melissa & Doug // Phone case: Stella McCartney // Bath oil: Jo Malone // Ballet flats: Tory Burch // Boxers: Royal Silk // Nail polish: Christian Louboutin // Handbag: Tory Burch 

From inexpensive teddy bears and boxers (for yourself, I mean, they are super comfy) to obnoxiously priced nail polish (I wonder who buys this), I've got your covered for the 14th.

What are your picks? Are you gonna treat yo self or treat someone else? Any exciting plans?

- Ane

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Opportunities and experiences

Kaixo everyone,

Today I'm feeling sappy. Not bad sappy, but happy sappy (lol puns). As I was going to leave the classroom at 5pm, our translation class instructor told us that Bob Woodward, one of the journalists who uncovered the whole Watergate scandal in the 1970s was giving a talk at 7pm this afternoon, sponsored by the College of Law here at U of I. I decided that heck, I was gonna go hear this guy who has witnessed and has been history. I gotta say, the talk was terrific. He talked about 8 presidents (the talk is the first of a series on Abraham Lincoln and his influence) and it was truly interesting. After I left the auditorium, I started thinking to myself about how lucky I am to go to such a great school, and the opportunities and experiences that this university has given me:

- I got a Master's from a top school in the field.
- My advisor is the king of his field.
- Had my very own, movie-like American graduation.

- I presented in two different conferences and got published in the first's proceedings (fingers crossed for the second one!).
- I have now almost 3 years of teaching experience and 5 different courses under my belt, ranging from 100 to 400 level.
- I never had prom in Spain, so I got fraternity formals and semiformals. And one of them was at the Sears Tower in Chicago.
(I am NOT wearing flats)
- I have been to the place North Shore High (Mean Girls' high school) was based on. And the Walker Brothers Pancake House. And Old Orchard Mall. Mean Girls is my favorite movie ever.
- I have traveled to NYC and Oregon, and been back to Colorado.

- I have rediscovered Chicago and have fallen in love each time.

- I've seen plenty of famous people like Bob Woodward...

Major Lazer
Jeff Dunham
MCLOVIN (and okay, Dave Franco)
Piper Kerman (OITNB, anyone?) 
JOE BIDEN (and he held my hand) 
Nev Schulman (aka my future husband)
- Got into an honors society.

Phi Kappa Phi
- I am currently the president of the graduate student RSO from my department.
- I am part of a retail industry based RSO that no matter how little it has to do with my studies, I love.
- I am about to start leading conversation groups in Spanish.
- I have been able to start translating and being certified by it, and I have been offered really cool translation jobs.
- I have fallen in love and also fallen out of it (sappy alert).
- I have made lifelong friendships.
- I have had an experience I would never have imagined.

Man, I love this place.

- Ane