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the mad magpie

  • is Steph, a Baby Boomer and a retired Head of English, with various academic qualifications:
    BA, Hons Anthrop,(USyd) Dip Ed Infants Preschool (STC), Grad Dip TEFL, MEd TESOL (USyd),BA Hons English (UNE),TC. A one time voracious reader who ploughed her way through a linguistics Masters degree by reading back to back Mills and Boon as a survival strategy, Steph now tends to knit more than she reads. This blog is an attempt to restore the balance into the life of a woman who was once struck with an epiphany in room 7 when she realised that someone was actually paying her decent money to teach Coleridge, when she would have waxed lyrical about lime-tree bowers all day for free! Such is life. And such is this mad woman blogger in the nest.


  • Process > Product
    My Blog Imperative is that the actual Productive Processes and Materials and Tools of a Craft are so utterly fascinating that to Record them and Curate them in my Blogs is actually a Compulsion. This notion of acquisition of cumulative layers of Process applies to Skills acquired such as piano and flute playing or insightful reading. I have even considered that Process applied to Observations about Life Viewed from Middle Age rapidly transiting into Old Age applies just as well.


  • Location: Australia

One-Line Bio

Leading a Fast Life in the Slow Lane & Ageing with Grace under Fire.


At some stage in 2008, 6 months into retirement from my years as a high school teacher of English, I decided to blog. 'Ms Textual' was my former TypePad blog, a book blog initially. I chose 'Ms Bubblefish' as my online moniker. God knows why! I experimented with a number of online blog identities as my interests were varied, until it all became too hard to juggle material for different audiences and different people.
I stopped blogging at the end of 2010 for about 6 months until I decided that I missed it and the lovely blogosphere contacts I'd made.
I created 'Magpie's Nest', which is a lovely catch-all metaphor for a retiree who still reads avidly, paints ceramics, travels, cooks, knits and tries to maximise life's potential as I hurtle towards my twilight years. I'm delighted to discover that there are still lots of wonderful experiences to participate in and reflect upon. And along the way I discovered that what I really wanted to blog about was models of healthy ageing. I wanted to reassure myself that it was possible to grow old with grace, passion, enthusiasm, intelligence, physical energy, and style. This blog is my 'Ph D' into the subject of a healthy longevity.
2012 February: I've now started writing fiction and wonder why I waited this long to start! I'm having the best fun!