Indulgence versus Restraint


rosemary scones
Pistachio-white chocolate and rosemary scones (Oct. 2017)


As I have often confessed here, I regularly indulge myself with baked goods or goodies how I like to call them. 😉

This month I´m happily exploring the wonderful world of scones. If you are in doubt how to pronounce scone the right way, here´s a funny little poem that illustrates how it is done correctly 😉 :

I asked the maid in dulcet tone
To order me a buttered scone;
The silly girl has been and gone
And ordered me a buttered scone. 

Thanks to Wikipedia I know now that in American English the pronunciation rhyming with tone is more common, whereas in Britain the two pronunciations traditionally have different regional and class associations. Here the pronunciation rhyming with gone is associated with the north of England, and the one rhyming with tone is associated with the south.


scones detail
Pistachio-white chocolate and rosemary scones, detail (Oct. 2017)

The good news is, they taste great no matter how you chose to pronounce them. 🙂

Traditionally British scones are lightly sweetened and the basic component of the Cream Tea. But they may also be savory and at this point I have to thank my dear friend Su over at Zimmerbitch for having introduced me to her wonderful Rosemary-Feta scones!

However, having only ever tasted the sweet ones, I was a bit reluctant to divert from my  tested and trusted recipe. So I opted for a variety that included Rosemary but remained sweet in the main part, the Pistachio-White Chocolate Rosemary scone.

The recipe is simple: just add a handful of fresh rosemary leaves cut into little pieces, a handful of peeled pistachios and some white chocolate chips to the basic recipe for traditional scones.

By now, I also have baked the Rosemary-Feta scones but to my utter embarrassment I have to admit that I was far too hungry at the time to arrange them for a photo shoot and simply gobbled them down with some hot strong tea. 😉

Which brings me to my drawing of this week: my tea-pot is several years old, made of fine porcelain and although it has lost its lid during a move from which it also had a little fragment chipped of at the rim. It´s still perfectly functional though and I love it to bits (literally).


Drawing of my battered old tea-pot (micron ink and water color on paper; Oct. 2017)


You may wonder by this point why the blog title for today also includes “restraint” when so far I have only given way to the indulgence bit.

This has two reasons:

One – I needed a good title and was wildly doing research on indulgence where I came upon some very interesting theories formulated by the Dutch social psychologist Geert Hofsteede.

His cultural dimensions theory is a framework for cross-cultural communication and describes the effects of a society’s culture on the values of its members, and how these values relate to behavior, using a structure derived from factor analysis.

This analysis identified systematic differences in national cultures on four primary dimensions, among which is also the dimension “Indulgence vs Restraint”. This dimension is essentially a measure of happiness; whether or not simple joys are fulfilled. Indulgence is defined as “a society that allows relatively free gratification of basic and natural human desires related to enjoying life and having fun.” Its counterpart is defined as “a society that controls gratification of needs and regulates it by means of strict social norms.” Indulgent societies believe themselves to be in control of their own life and emotions; restrained societies believe other factors dictate their life and emotions.

Naturally this doesn’t even come near covering the whole topic but might give you an incentive to research further on your own if you´re inclined to do so.


The second reason for choosing this title is, that lately I have some trouble with my stomach and am now trying to restrain myself from indulging too often in my baked goodies. Luckily my very competent GP said that this will only have to be temporary and I´m already looking forward to all the lovely treats waiting for me. 😉

Published by Sarah

Artist & Illustrator

98 thoughts on “Indulgence versus Restraint

  1. Just a note to say thank you Sarah for your support and reads. I appreciate every one of the clicks you make on my posts and, even more than that, knowing you’re out in the world sharing your creativity and smile 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I really like the way you approach this subject and the links you make with the cultural research. Great read! I am 50-50 on restraint and indulgence. But that doesn’t mean I am in complet control. Hell no, when I indulged it is sometimes way too much!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I love scones and that recipe sounds lovely. My grandmother used to disappear into the kitchen when guests arrived and 20 minutes later there were fresh baked scones with butter. I hope your tummy problems have disappeared. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Your grandmother sounds like my kind of gal! 😀 There´s nothing better than warm bread of cake or scones to make your guests feel welcome.
      Tummy´s much better now, but I´m still careful with the goodies 😉
      Have a lovely day, Kerry! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha! 😀 Well, I would love to send you some but I´m not sure if they would be still fresh enough when they arrive! Maybe you should try baking them yourself, it really is a very easy recipe and the scones need only about 12 minutes.


    1. Thank you very much, Lauren! I´m feeling much better already – thanks to those wonderful pills my doc prescribed me! But I´m still taking it easy on the sugary stuff as a precaution. But I´m planning to bake some peanut butter cookies later today 😉 xoxo ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi Sarah, these scones look delicious. Can you send some, please? 🙂 I, too, have been an avid baker, taking after my mom who watches me bake now from above. But, I don’t bake as often simply because I’m trying to not eat too much of the good stuff. I’ll always indulge now and then though; sugar is my vice (now you know). 🙂 Love, love your teapot that exudes delicacy, charm, and warmth with that tea pouring out…❣

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Lauren, thank you so much and I would love to send you some scones! 😀
      I know what you mean about trying not to eat too much of the good stuff 😉 But I have a very sweet tooth and almost always loose the battle if something yummy is in reach 😉
      And how wonderful that you shared your baking passion with your mom – I´m sure she´s smiling every time from above when she sees you baking. 🙂
      Wish you a very lovely day! 💕🍰

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Sarah, I think it is really neat that you enjoy baking. It seems to be going the way of letter writing destined to be a lost art. Like you, I enjoy goodies. I chastise myself for this, really wishing I could give up sugar as I still have a pretty good metabolism and could probably ditch a good 7 lbs to be really slender, oh well, sigh. Scones sound heavenly. I think I would prefer the sweet ones too! Tea and scones, so English, I could just picture two elegant ladies in a garden at a small table with cups of tea and a small china plate with scones. I’m laughing at your friend’s blogging name, Zimmerbitch, LOL. Restraint vs. Indulgence is an interesting theory. I have no restraint, ha ha. Today I bought croissants and Nutella! But I only allowed myself half of one (230 calories for a full one and that doesn’t include the Nutella). I adore your teapot drawing. It reminds of me of mine (it was my mother’s who recently passed). The lid is lost too and the rim has a slight chip. She used to make me tea all the time. I love that pot and will treasure it always. I hope you feel better. Enjoy your goodies, happy weekend to you! Much love. xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for your lovely comment, Lana! 😀 And when it comes to croissants my strong belief is that restraint should be absolutely and resolutely be forgotten about! Especially in combination with Nutella 😉 I swear, I can smell fresh croissants in a mile or two 😉 They call to me like the sirens of old whaling stories in the 19th century 😉
      I too am blessed with quite a good metabolism which as a fun fact is actually a bad metabolism because it means we´re not getting as much out of our nutrition as we should 😉 Like elephants who have to eat tons of grass because they put only 20% of it to use! But I notice that it slowly but surely is changing with every year 😉
      And how wonderful that you can relate so much to my teapot! I think it would be a shame to throw away things that harbor so many memories, especially when yours belonged to your mom. The same friend who´s blog name made you laugh told me of a Japanese tradition called Kintsuge that handles these chipped pieces of porcelain with loving care and repairs them with gold infused glue. You can google it and have a look, it looks magnificent! Even much better I think sometimes than it originally must have looked. 😉 And I like the philosophy that stands behind this approach too.
      Have a very lovely Sunday and a wonderful new week ahead! Much love! xoxo ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Mmmm scones (rhymes with “tones” the way I say it) are a great treat after-dinner with a cup of tea 😀 I like adding butter but occasionally jam instead. Glad to hear you’ll be able to get back to some tasty baked goods soon, as per your doctor. Hugs!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. This is a very substantial post: lots to think on.

    Firstly, I LOVE SCONES! sweet or savoury! My favourite these days is cheesy scones, but I eat the with jam anyway (did I ever tell you I have a very sweet tooth?) Your combination of pistachio, white chocolate & rosemary sounds extremely exciting! I am a little hesitant about the rosemary, but if you were brave enough to try it, I think I will too! I use Delia Smith’s recipe, and tweak it with whatever tickles my fancy. Her recipe makes quite a delicate scone, which we enjoy. Here’s a link to my post with the vegan-iced recipe:

    Secondly, I finally put my finger on why I love your drawings: they are at once delicate while bursting with life! I almost expect them to quirkily jump out of the page and dance!

    Thirdly, I have myself been trying to limit my consumption of sweeties (like you, I also LOVE baked goodies!). So your discussion of restraint provides much food for thought as it relates to me, as well as to society at large.

    Lastly, I hope you feel better soon, and that you will up to enjoying your baked goods again!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much for your wonderful comment! And I also have a very sweet tooth 😉
      Your cheesy scones sound so appetizing, I think that´s going to be the next scone project on my list! What kind of cheese do you use for them?
      And there´s no need to be hesitant about the rosemary, it really suits the pistachios and white chocolate surprisingly! 😀 But you could try it without it at first of course 😉
      The first few days of restraint were quite tough, but now it´s much better and since I´m not abandoning the baked goodies completely but simply reduce my intake it´s also not as challenging as a complete refusal for the mind. I think a good balance is the key to all things, and by achieving it we can only benefit. 😉
      Lately there´s a discussion here in Germany about Orthorexie, meaning about people who only want to eat “clean food” which in our age of mass production and the use of antibiotics and chemicals that goes along with it, is highly challenging if not impossible if you´re not self providing for everything. It´s been reported that people develop severe symptoms of malnutrition because of it, because they decide not to eat anything labeled “unclean”. It´s a scary development and I hope this “trend” is going to come to an end soon!

      And thank you so much for your wonderful compliment about my drawings! Your words make me sing and dance and put the biggest smile possible on my face! 😀

      Wish you a beautiful weekend and a wonderful new week ahead! xxx

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I will try the rosemary and pistachio … and perhaps the chocolate 🙂

        This whole “clean food” movement has caused a lot of problems. I heard several podcasts about it, and I have heard the problems with malnutrition, as you’ve mentioned. I’ve also heard that it causes a lot of eating disorders. I guess it’s all about finding a balance, isn’t it?

        Thank you for this conversation! It was fun!

        Have a wonderful week ahead!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha! 😀 In this case you should hurry and make yourself a lovely batch 😉 It´s astonishingly easy and quick to make.
      When – and I say when and not if 😉 – we meet, we´re going to indulge on scones and tea 🙂 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I shall try soon. Right now, I’m getting ready to leave for Connecticut to visit my mom and bro. Matt (FlyTrapMan) and I have fun stuff planned to share with our blogger pals. Ah, I love the idea of meeting you, liebling! ❤️💋

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Back In the 90s all my cookies used to come out bad – well not my biscotti – but my hubs one day said hey – u make good scones !!! Lol – and I liked your post on scones but my fav of this post is your wonderful teapot rendering – it has so much personality and it is one of my favorite pieces of yours Miss g!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, my, that´s sounds awful! 😀 I hope that your cookies come out much better in this decade, Yvette 😉
      And thank you so much for your lovely compliment! Drawing this teapot was so much fun and it´s so wonderful to know that it´s one of your favorites of mine! 😀 It´s one of mine as well! Have a super lovely rest of the week and a fantastic weekend! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. well they mostly come out better – but cakes are (and have always been) more my thing. Seriously, I think some folks have more of a gift for baking…. and then baking certain things and I am very proud of my easy and inexpensive cakes – which I have made because I can usually make something better than what our local stores offer – and then the custom ones are not always wise to buy for small occasions – ha>
        and getting ready to have some tea now – so I will toast to your lovely art…
        and wishing you a nice week too dear artista

        Liked by 1 person

  9. Ah, that title… but, who can resist those scones? 😉 With tea in that lovely teapot! Such a great combination, Sarah. Wonderful creative recipes too… really enjoyable to read and indulge. 😃 Hope you are better now, Sarah. ❤ 🎶 🌹

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks so much, Iris! 😀 Wish I could share some tea and those scones (or better still a new batch since the ones in the picture are of course already gone 😉 ) with all my lovely friends here! Although I would probably need a bigger teapot then! 😀
      Feeling a bit better already, thank you. 🙂 Drinking lots of herbal and ginger tea instead of coffee which seems to do me good.
      Have a very lovely week! Many hugs! 🙂 ❤ xxx

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Sarah, I”m so sorry you haven’t been too well…hopefully you can enjoy the delights of more scones (said in the Northern way!) soon. My son and I baked these regularly when he was younger but always plain – I love the sound of savoury ones! Rosermary and /Feta ones…yummy!! Probably just as well you gobbled them all down othewise I’d be drooling. I was most interested over the points of indulgence v. restraint…and ahh…delightful drawing of your loved teapot!! I like how the title of it is creatively drawn from the tea pouring from the spout! Take care, hugs xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much, Annika! 😀
      I have to admit to develop some kind of addiction to scones (now trying to pronounce it the northern way because I find it much lovelier like this 😉 ). 😂They are so easily and quickly made!
      You should definitely try out those savory ones, there are so many lovely recipes out there, like with olives, dried tomatoes, cheddar… it seems the possible combinations are endless! 😀
      Wish you a very lovely week! Many hugs! 😀 xxx

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Very interesting view on this subject. Had never thought of it as a national, cultural ideal. My extra 40 pounds shows what category I fall into.:( Almost no restraint here what so ever. Those scones look scrumptious! My daughter loves to make them when she comes to visit. I have a decent kitchen. 🙂 I do hope you get your stomach right soon so you can go back to having a scone once in a while again.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Marlene! 😀
      At least now you know that it actually isn´t your fault 😉 It also has a lot to do with how one is brought up too of course, but the general assumption is that the asian countries favor the restraint over the indulgence. That said I need to add that most of my asian friends living here have completely given up on that ideal though 😉
      Have a lovely week! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  12. You should be careful because I have a friend and he indulged too much on cakes, he liked cakes so much that he went as far as becoming as pastry cook when he was a teenager but then because of his job he ate too many cakes and croissants and other goodies full of sugar and so he became a diabetic, so now he must be careful… So be careful 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for caring! 😀 I can only too well understand your friend – I have often thought I would love to become a pastry chef as well 😉
      My grandfather became a diabetic that way, and this has been a warning to me. So no matter how much I love all those goodies, I do my best to keep it in balance. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Oh Sarah, I hope your stomach is better very soon. 🙂
    Your scones look soooo delicious and I think the addition of rosemary to white chocolate and pistachio is genius!!!!
    Thank you for the shout-out; I love how many of us have engaged with such a lovely simple food. I had never heard anyone use the US and southern English pronunciation until I was an adult. Scots people and Kiwis are definitely in the scone/gone camp!
    Your teapot drawing is beautiful. I think it’s great that you found a new lid and kept using a favourite teapot. It reminded me a bit of the Japanese tradition called Kintsuge, where ceramics are repaired with the addition of gold, to highlight the repair in a beautiful way, rather than trying to hide it. It reminds us that our belongings have a history and a life that is part of ours and we should celebrate that.
    Thanks too for the reference to Hofsteede. I vaguely knew about the IBM research, but didn’t know who authored it.
    xxxxx 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Su! 😀
      I´m taking some medicine for it now and it already helps a bit but my GP warned me that it can be a long process.
      You definitely should try the Pistachio-white chocolate-roseamary scones! The rosemary goes really well with it 🙂
      I used to pronounce scone like tone but since I discovered that there´s the gone version as well, I´m actively trying to pronounce it like that because I think it sounds much nicer! I must be part Scottish 😉
      Thank you so much for pointing out Kintsuge to me! I´ve never heard of it before (which in my semi-profession is a shame really), and had a look on Google and just love it!!! To be honest, I think many of those broken and then repaired ceramics do actually look much better that way than in their original way. And I love the philosophy that stands behind it! The funny thing is, my mum uses gold colored tin foil from sweets and such to fill in cracks sometimes which really looks great. But those are only for looking at of course because liquids would pour out. I think I will see if I can get my hands on those Japanese materials, or make my own kind of repair kit since the use of real gold seems a little pricey to me 😉
      And with that teapot of mine, I have to add that I actually like its new lid much more than the old one as it brings a flash of lovely color to it that has been missing before. xxxxxxx 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m so glad you have some medicine for your stomach. I’m off to Melbourne this week so will have to bake when I get back.
        I really like the philosophy of Kintsuge too. The more I learn about the environmental costs of creating new stuff, the more I want to cherish the old. I’d love to know if you can buy/make a repair kit. Hope you have a wonderful week. I will email you soon. xxxxx 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thank you. It’s raining today in Melbourne, so I’m going to see the Dior exhibition that’s on at the Nat Gallery of Victoria. Love the idea of being surrounded by beautiful clothes. Hope you are having a good week too. Xxx

        Liked by 1 person

      3. 😃 I haven’t seen that, but she had such an elegant look.
        The exhibition was fantastic: beautifully staged, and sooooo many gorgeous clothes. It was also incredibly busy. I went late in the day and had to queue ages for a ticket. But totally worthwhile. I took lots of photos, but the light wasn’t kind, so I’m not sure they’ll do justice to the dresses.
        What I really took from the exhibition was how all the head designers after Dior himself died managed to express their own creativity, without losing the “Dior look.”

        Liked by 1 person

      4. I´m so glad you enjoyed your visit, even if it was crowded 🙂 And I hope you´ll post some of the pics, I hunger for elegance! 😀
        It´s funny how I seem to connect certain actresses with certain designers like Grace Kelly with Dior and Audrey Hepburn with Chanel… And you´re so right about it being wonderful how the designer after Dior himself managed to keep the Dior look without loosing their own touch!

        Liked by 1 person

  14. I’m sending all my warmest thoughts for a quick recovery for your poorly tummy. Having to avoid baked goodies is my idea of actual hell 😞. Your scones look fantastic. I say scone like gone, by the way despite the fact that I was brought up in Oxford which is more south than north. My father used to say Scoon to wind up both sides of what is a very serious debate in Britain 😆. Lots of love to you and I hope the weekend is full of sunshine. We have had blissful weather here which is due to break for a couple of days overnight giving a rude drop from 26 to 15 degrees bbrrrrrrr xxxxxxxxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you very much, Fiona! Actually it´s my idea of hell as well 😂 But I´m taking my medicine and will hope for the best – it´s imperative that it´s getting better in time for Christmas 😉
      Love that your father used to add another version to that very serious debate! I think I have barely scratched on its surface! I used to say scone like tone but have recently been trying to change it into gone because I actually like the sound of it better. 🙂
      I can´t really complain on the weather although it´s cold and rainy – I managed to drop something quite heavy on my foot on Saturday and have now to wait until the swelling recedes so I´m stuck in bed, which actually is a fine way to spend 😉 Have been reading a lot! SO nice for a change 😀
      But I hope it´s getting better in your corner! Much love to you! 🙂 xxxxxxxxxxxxxx ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh dear! You are in the wars …. please try not to do yourself any more harm – I think you have had quite enough this year 😞 I definitely prefer the scone as in gone pronunciation (the other way always sounds awfully affected to my ears) but doubtless if I had been raised in the tone scone way I would think differently. So much love to you and aller mieux! Xxxxxxx

        Liked by 1 person

  15. Oh, that is too bad to not seeing the picture. Regardless, the tea pot drawing is very nice. I think I like you when I see good disk at restaurant that worth taking a picture of. Most of the time, I was too preoccupied to dig in 🙂 Taking a picture become the third or forth thing in mind at the time 🙂 I guess I need to subscribe to “restraint” society now.

    Hope your condition improves soon. I know how that goes so well.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Hi Sarah
    How are you?The scones look & sound wonderful!Dreaming of devouring them with tea:) And your art… amazing! Oh the holiday season is hard when it comes to restraint. Balance is the best and not easy to achieve;) Hugs xx

    Liked by 1 person

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