In just over a week, all going well with the Ash clouds, I will be catching up with my family to celebrate my Dad's 60th birthday.
I was born and raised in New Zealand and lived there till I was 16 when I left to live in Southern Chile near where the volcano is erupting.
I then returned to New Zealand lived there for a few more years then decided to move to Australia.
For the last 12 years I have lived here in South East Queensland in various locations but without any family. I should clarify here that I did not move to get away from my family and I have a great relationship with them.
I am fortunate enough to see my family at least once a year. In fact often I see them more as I always make one trip over there a year and generally one of my relatives pop over here for a visit, normally in their winter when our temperatures are much milder.
But the thing that I miss the most is all those little and some not so little occasions like birthdays, baby showers, anniversary's and general family get togethers.
On this trip I will be meeting my Niece Hannah for the first time and also the baby of my cousin who I am very close to.
I have a great relationship with my 3 remaining grandparents and I know that at 33 I am extremely lucky to have such a lot of quality time with each of them but hopefully there are still years to come as I really value their input to my life.
What gets me through is my Husbands family who treat me like one of their own. They are loving, supportive and kind and with them I get to share in those little and some not so little occasions.
But there is nothing like going home and I treasure every moment I have with my family during the time when we are together. So with just over a week to go the excitement is building and catching up with family is on my mind.