I would just use the bucket. They usually have more headspace and are much easier to clean since you can fit your hands in there. It also helps keep down the amount of "is my beer infected/ruined" threads since you can't really be as frightened by the sight of yeast rafts, krausen, break material, etc. Additionally it helps keep UV damage down.
As for yeast... When I use dry yeast, I just sprinkle on the surface and let it sink on its own. It will find the sugars and do its job. It may just take an hour or so more to start.