Cuppa Critics

It’s not everyday I can get my Hubby to appear on Snapchat.  But last night he joined me for “Cuppa Critics” where we shared our take on eleven fabulous films.  I was given the “screeners”, as the are called, by Screen Actors Guild to watch before I vote in the upcoming SAG awards. Though I haven’t acted since switching careers to the food industry full time when we moved to Dublin in 2008, I am still a proud card carrying member.  I started acting as a child and in fact have my pension with Screen Actors Guild.  So I take my privilige of voting in this prestigious awards seriously.

Continue reading

Screen Actors Guild Awards


As a card carrying member of the Screen Actors Guild now for over 43 years, I take my privilege seriously.  The Screen Actors Guild began having their own awards show twenty two years ago, and I feel honored to be able to vote each year. I also get the benefit of receiving movie screeners and my Hubby and I enjoy our at home cinema binge nights. But this is the first time I have ever documented it on social media.


For the past month each time we’d watch a film, I posted a pic for snapchat of the movie we were about to watch. Obviously for legal reasons, I didn’t post any video or any other pics besides an initial shot just to establish which film we were viewing. Then, yesterday when I did my due diligence and voted online, I included my snapchat friends in the process (btw, my snapchat username in case you want to follow along is: blissbakery). I didn’t show who I voted for, but they did see what the ballot looked like and the final “you’re done, voting complete” page.


I have always loved awards shows. The pomp and circumstance, the fashion, the anticipation, the emotion, the speeches, they all enthrall me.  Wow, I get teared up just thinking about it! I have been lucky enough in my lifetime to have attended several awards shows.  I went to the Grammys in 1984 the year Michael Jackson took home all the awards for the Thriller album. Then in 1985 I attended the 57th Academy Awards and witnessed the infamous acceptance speech by Sally Field when she said, “You like me”.  I went to the 68th Academy Awards in 1996 when a paralyzed Christopher Reeves bravely got on stage and from his wheelchair gave the most incredible speech ever! Finally, I was able to join my dear friend Quincy Jones at the Emmy Awards in 1996 as he was nominated for an award for producing the just mentioned Academy Awards show. True story, our limo broke down on the way there!


Watching the SAG awards tonight was a thrill! It is more engaging because I feel vested in the outcome.  It was a fab show and is always a great precursor to the Academy Awards. Many of the winners go on to get the coveted Oscar!  But what is different this year, is that many of those who won tonight, aren’t even nominated in the Academy Awards. Thus the controversy of lack of diversity, or as some call it, #OscarsSoWhite.  Even in this LA Times’ winners recap article, the subject was blatantly broached and nothing held back. As if to say, “Hey Motion Picture Academy, what’s your problem?”

Besides shouting about it, when we have the right to vote, which is a privilege, we can quietly show our voice through that medium. Which is why voting in the United States political elections is also important to me even though I have lived abroad for eight years now. Absentee ballots are the way to go folks, no excuses! And being able to vote online for the SAG awards is an honor too which I don’t take lightly. Even if it is “entertainment” I believe it is food for the soul as we humans need a bit of fun too!  And it is lovely to recognize the achievements of those that have truly captured an emotion, a character and an essence of a triumph of spirit.

I will do a complete analysis of the films for another post, but I just wanted to highlight a couple of individuals that received awards tonight. These actors truly touched me with their performances and left a haunting impression that is still palatable.


Brie Larson first caught my eye in the gripping independent film Short Term 12.  But when I watched the inspiring mother son love in the powerful film Room, I knew this lady was going to take home some hardware this year (code for heavy awards statues). She underplayed the role of Ma with such nuance that it made me forget I was watching a movie. The mark of a great actor is to reel you in, take you on the journey and then leave you utterly transformed. Yes Brie, you did all that and more!  Congrats on your well deserved SAG award and likely many more to come.  Footnote, the film was based on a book by Irish writer Emma Donoghue (who also wrote the screenplay) and directed by Irishman Lenny Abrahamson!  NO performance happens in a vacuum and Brie got plenty of support from Jacob Tremblay who played her son, and Lenny Abrahamson! P.S. You gotta love the Irish influence in cinema. Would be great to see more of it!

HOLLYWOOD, CA - MARCH 02: Leonardo DiCaprio arrives at the 86th Annual Academy Awards at Hollywood & Highland Center on March 2, 2014 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)

Leonardo DiCaprio has been a Hollywood darling for years. He is my darling for one reason only, because he is my younger brother’s doppelgänger. I must admit, I haven’t ever been that much of a fan. Sure he gives solid performances, but none of his films have tugged at my heart strings (though I have heard that his performance in What’s Eating Gilbert Grape would do just that). However, The Revenant, not only tugged at my heart strings, it tore my heart out, ate it up and spit it out!  Sorry to be so descriptive, but if you see the film, my sentence will seem tame. I don’t know if I have ever seen a more gut wrenching film!  It is harsh, both on the nerves, and also just watching the frigid weather on the screen made me cold. And poor Leo trudged through it all, whilst bleeding, starving and mourning. Without giving away the film, his character Hugh Glass, is practically reincarnated before our eyes. Very little dialogue, but so much emotion in this film. When people say Leo should win this Oscar as a gesture for such a long career without any accolades, I say no can do. Leo will win the Oscar for this film because he deserves it.

I hope you have garnered a little more insight into the SAG awards and check this space as I will give an analysis about the films nominated. Until then, thanks for reading!

Awarding you LOVE,







Have you ever been late and yet still make up for lost time?  I am normally a very prompt person when it comes to appointments and other day to day life commitments.  But my dichotomy is that I also have my own timing when it comes to major life milestones such as marriage, motherhood, and education.  And you can include social media into the milieu! Though I have joined it late, I am blasting away with tweets, Instagram posts and snapchat stories like there is no tomorrow!

What I love about social media is the ability to show some love to deserving people or products that I admire.  As with the #womancrushwednesday here, here and here, I have also been sending love  Kerrygold’s way!  Why?  Because in a world with lots of negative ‘noise and chatter’ it is nice to let authentic positive vibes be propelled above the grey clouds and shine through with genuine adulation.  Besides that,  I want to show that you can use more than the yummy yellow butter itself.  The gorgeous gold wrapper it comes in is super helpful in the kitchen.  I’ve used it for a roast chicken coat, a potato and onion blanket, and an apple cake rub!

I have been a Kerrygold customer for years.  Even before I moved to Ireland I would search grocery stores in America that carried the coveted butter and cheese.  Now living in London, I do the same, only shopping where I can purchase Kerrygold.  I’ve told my husband don’t even think about a move to anywhere that doesn’t carry it!  There is absolutely no competition in my mind for the flavor and quality of their dairy products.  And particularly as a baker, I can taste the difference in the final result when using the Kerrygold Creamery Butter in my cakes and cookies.  As well I have created savory dishes entirely around their cheeses, such as my Dubliner Cheese Salad (which also happens to contain baby greens, strawberries and almonds).

It is the most ethically sound dairy to purchase as it is tops in sustainability.  And finally, when all the bru haha was going on about butter vs. margarine (which that has now come back full circle)  I just kept saying, “I prefer to trust cows over chemists!” Kerry cows that is!

And in the privacy of my own home I even do a “Butterlicious” dance.  However, since it is to the tune of Destiny’s Child’s song “Bootylicious” I will defer to one of the lines in the lyrics “I don’t think they can handle this” and I will refrain from showing you my dance!  Let’s just say, I wouldn’t be asked to join the next season of Strictly Come Dancing!  Though I have never met her personally, I do have a connection to Beyonce Knowles the singer from Destiny’s Child.  I mentioned on here before that she and I were in the annual special edition Most Beautiful issue of People Magazine.

That is me on the inside of the magazine representing the 47 year old women out there!

But there is another Bae story.  I was on a flight back to my home in L.A. from Newark, N.J after filming a television commercial for Prudential Real Estate.  The ad agency kindly booked me in first class (as I normally wouldn’t do that myself). As people were boarding I noticed there was a man who was having trouble with his ticket and finding the correct seat. The flight attendants were flustered trying to help him and finally I said, “you are more than welcome to sit in this seat next to me.”  When the man sat down he thanked me and said, “I appreciate that. Not many white women would offer up the seat next to them to a black man.”  We had a lovely chat all the way to L.A.  He said he was in the music business and lived in Houston, Texas.  I mentioned that the only music I knew coming out of Houston was from Beyonce!  He calmly replied, “That’s my daughter.”  He gave me his card and told me to contact his office for some free cd’s to be mailed to me, which I did take him up on that offer.  And that was it, I never saw him again.

So hopefully Beyonce won’t mind my secret reincarnation of her song to savor my food lover, Kerrygold butter!

Last year I had the privilege of attending the Ballymaloe Lit Fest sponsored by, you guessed it, Kerrygold!  I had an amazing time attending cooking demos, food panel discussions and meeting some incredible giants in the culinary world.  But my prized souvenir? My butter button!


One of my very first tweets was the pic just at the top of this post.  It was a collage I made of two different Kerrygold butter wrappers, one from the U. S. and one from London.  Though I miss Ireland, I still have a bit of it in my heart (and tummy) when I have some on hand in the house.  And it reminds me of one of the best commercials ever to be shown on television.  I only wish I had been able to be in this commercial!  Make sure to have a tissue nearby for this one.

With a slather of buttery love,