Forty One Things I’ve Learned in Forty One Years


February 28, 2024

Fisher Foods

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I'm Karla

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41, the words just rolled off my tongue. But also, how can it be. It feels exciting, warm, reminiscent, sacred, rich and…. welcoming. I wonder how I am already well into my 40’s. Not that this is a bad thing at all, but I feel overwhelmed with the speed at which each year passes. It just doesn’t feel right some days that just yesterday I was 18.. quite literally feels that way. The life lessons I’ve learned have been endless and today felt like a good day to share 41 of them with you!

So here’s a collection of sorts.. serious, funny, truth, hard, easy and light. But all carry equal weight to the reality that a life lived fully, completely and wholly requires many things. The pruning and the growing on this side of heaven can feel heavy, but I know that the blessing and the breakthrough require both.

But I have fully learned that pasta is life. Period.

41st B I R T H D A Y word

  • Grace

41st B I R T H D A Y verse

  • ”May He grant you out of the riches of His glory, to be strengthened and spiritually energized with power through His Spirit in your inner self, [indwelling your innermost being and personality], so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through your faith. And may you, having been [deeply] rooted and [securely] grounded in love, be fully capable of comprehending with all the saints (God’s people) the width and length and height and depth of His love [fully experiencing that amazing, endless love]; and [that you may come] to know [practically, through personal experience] the love of Christ which far surpasses [mere] knowledge [without experience], that you may be filled up [throughout your being] to all the fullness of God [so that you may have the richest experience of God’s presence in your lives, completely filled and flooded with God Himself]. Now to Him who is able to [carry out His purpose and] do superabundantly more than all that we dare ask or think [infinitely beyond our greatest prayers, hopes, or dreams], according to His power that is at work within us,“
    ‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭3‬:‭16‬-‭20‬ ‭

41st B I R T H D A Y song

1. Who you surround yourself with is who you become. Be choosy. Be careful. Be intentional. Be kind, but be aware.

2. Not everyone is for you… and that’s OKAY! It doesn’t feel okay sometimes, but it is. Just find the ones who are FOR you!

3. Rejection is Protection! Trust me. If God wants it to happen, it will happen. He sees what we can’t and that kind of perspective is enough to rest well because of it.

4. LOVE your parents deeply. Every year I learn a deeper appreciation in how monumental my parents wisdom truly is. I don’t take for granted the sacrifices made over the years. It softens my heart to the frailty of time, in relationship and memories. And CALL them, A LOT- it really matters!

5. Forgiveness isn’t a one and done. It’s a daily practice, for myself and others. Forgive everyone everything. This doesn’t always mean they still have access, but it does mean you don’t live imprisoned to the darkness of unforgiveness which festers into bitterness and all kinds of unhealthy junk.

6. Mindfulness in the present moments leads to gratefulness in the past moments. Choosing to be present in the present is a muscle I am still having to train. I think the training lasts a lifetime!

7. Less people pleasing and more confident acceptance of WHO God made me, what brings me joy and less apologizing about it.

8. Time management is an important skill. It might not come natural but it is a skill worth pruning and learning. Just because we weren’t born a natural “something” doesn’t mean we can’t learn it. Especially if it is a skill that greatly benefits a life well lived.

9. Kindess matters. It starts within our own hearts and then trickles out to those around us. We can’t give out what we don’t put in.

10. Travel light. Anchor heavy. We can’t take anything with us at the end of life, but we can leave endless eternal footprints behind. Make the imprints lasting and meaningful.

11. Wear the red lipstick. But make sure it’s the right shade! Nothing like a good pop of lipstick to turn a day around… Am I right??

12. Communicate well. Talk. Be vulnerable. Authenticity matters more than anything for relationships and friendships to flourish.

13. It’s O K A Y to not be okay. It really is.

14. Nobody has it all together. You may think they do. It may appear that they do. But they don’t. So STOP comparing.

15. Say No and don’t feel guilty. I’ve learned that not all yes’s are good and not all no’s are bad. You have to figure out which one is better for you.

16. Create healthy boundaries– even if others don’t understand. The only people who break other peoples boundaries are the ones who don’t have any themselves.

17. Accept failure as a perfect opportunity to learn and grow. Thomas Edison said it best, ” I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that don’t work.”

18. Stop saving for special occasions! Today is a special occasion, don’t MISS it… Eat on the fine china, use the nice sheets, burn the candle!

19. Gratitude changes everything! Taking 5 minutes at the beginning or the end of the day to write down what I am grateful for is a total mindset booster.

20. Get outside everyday, even if it’s just 10 minutes. Miracles are everywhere & the sun has an amazing way of boosting endorphins, changing moods, lifting depression and anxiety and of course you get a little bonus glow- because who doesn’t love a little sunkissed skin!!

21. Taking care of your body as a Priority! Feed it well. Move it more. Rest it intentionally. Talk to it gently. And making space for grace when you fall off track.

22. Shut your mouth, Open your ears! James said it a little nicer, “Everyone be quick to listen, and slow to speak..” It’s hard to have empty ears when you have a mouth full of words.

23. ALWAYS invest in a good quality pair of boots and a warm winter coat. Quality matters. Fast fashion ain’t warm!

24. Grief is lifelong. Time doesn’t heal, it just simply puts a physical divide between open wound and healing wound. But the wound and scar never go away. Grief comes without warning and never leaves. It’s only when you press into the feelings of grief and try not to stuff them that lifelong healing can begin.

25. Be your own un-doing. Call yourself out. Learn the importance of self-evaluation no matter how hard it is.

26. Carry a 40 oz reusable water bottle everywhere you go. Don’t leave home without it. Put it beside your bed. Travel with it. Water is life. It’s also the best thing for your skin.

27. Be fully yourself in all capacities. Job. Relationships. Friendships. Family. Don’t puff yourself up, or make yourself little, JUST BE YOU!

28. Prayer Works. Period. In all things. In all ways. In all seasons.

29. Invest in the hobbies that bring you joy. One day those hobbies just may grow into something bigger, but even if not, you still sharpened a new skill and kept your mind thinking, learning and creating in new ways. This is so beneficial to our brain health and life health.

30. Find a healthy skin routine and STAY consistent. It’s the only skin you’ll have, treat it with gentle care.

31. Say Yes to the uncomfortable.. but find the balance in not getting overwhelmed. One of the keys to growth is stepping outside our little safe comfort zones and taking risks. It often takes a risk to reap the reward!

32. SAVE. SAVE. SAVE. Pay off debt. Live in financial freedom. Learn how to budget. Your future self will thank you.

33. Admit when you’re wrong and sincerely apologize. The greatest apology goes beyond saying, “I’m sorry;” it’s making a change.

34. Tell people you love them. This sounds so simple, but we often assume they know. And yes, they may. But let them hear it again!

35. Get rid of anything that isn’t useful, beautiful or joyful. From inside our homes to inside our minds.

36. God loves you because of who God is, not because of anything you did or didn’t do. Don’t get the two mixed up.

37. Be interruptible. Don’t be so caught up in the to-do’s and structure of your day that you miss the miracles or divine appointments that come your way. We often miss them in our focused blindness of life.

38. All that truly matters in the end.. is how well we loved.

39. Relationships are either growing or dying. We get to choose. What are we watering or what are we spraying with round-up.

40. Envy and Jealousy are a waste of time. If we threw every issue we had in a pile AND saw everyone else’s.. we’d grab ours back in a minute. Quit comparing (I think I’ve mentioned that a few times now)!!!!

41. It’s a bad moment, not a bad day! I say this a lot to our 4 year old and I remind my own heart of it often. It’s easy to get so down in different seasons and think, “This is just how it is”. But that’s not true. Seasons come and go, so do emotions and difficulties. It’s pressing in and growing through it, not getting stuck IN it.

  • a little extra, because… The ONE & ONLY thing that has gotten me through all the worst of my days and humbled me on all my best days: The Bible ❤️ If you don’t know where to start, read one Psalm a day. I promise you won’t be the same!

Happy Birthday or Happy Any day to you! I hope you are encouraged today to go out and think about what is important to your own heart. What makes you smile, what brings you joy, what sparks new life in your soul. Let God carry your burdens and lighten your load today and NEVER ever ever EVER forget how deeply loved you are ❤️

Blessing upon Blessing,


Comments +

  1. Michelle Fincher says:

    Amen ❤️

  2. Miriam Alex says:

    Love this!!!!

  3. Brenda says:

    Love this!! So wise ❤️

  4. Josh says:

    Love this! And holy moly my girl is rocking that denim!😍

  5. Ann Dillon says:

    My Beautiful Karla,
    No, it can’t be!!! From that little girl who would run around our home singing, playing, and desired to know everything she could about eating healthy. You fed my passion and still do. Happy 41″st Birthday Karla. I am so proud of the most beautiful women, wife and mother you have become! Forever your second mom, Ann

    • Karla Fisher says:

      tears 😭 Those moments marked my heart for a lifetime. I hope you understand the impact you had on my life, momma Ann. It is something I treasure! Love you so much!

  6. Kimberly McKnight says:

    Beautiful words from a beautiful soul!!! Happy birthday, angel!!! I love you!

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