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FOR RELEASE: TUESDAY, JANUARY 17, 2012

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The moon in Scorpio adds weight to the emotional and spiritual water sign influences overhead. Just as water rises to its own level, our moods will easily follow the tone of those around us. Someone has to lead, though. Will it be you? Dare to make your mood an issue of mind over matter and personal will.

ARIES (March 21-April 19). You may feel out of sync with the people around you. You like people, but social connections are not your main source of happiness right now. Solitude has a way of centering you.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20). If you expect yourself to be an expert right out of the gate, you'll only set yourself up for disappointment. False starts and reversed directions are a key part of your learning process.

GEMINI (May 21-June 21). You'll be critical to the success of a team. You will be motivated by intangible rewards. Being recognized for something you do well may be an even better reward of your efforts than money.

CANCER (June 22-July 22). You'll be at ease when considering other people's viewpoints, a sign of maturity and sophistication that won't go unnoticed by equally mature and sophisticated individuals.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22). A touch of restlessness might put you in a shopping mood, although it's not a great time for it. You will be much better off consolidating what you have instead of buying more.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22). The group won't seem to know what they are doing, but the collective intelligence of the group is higher than you think. Besides, going solo may be a good way to get lost today. So stick together.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 23). In order to stay abreast of the competition, you'll figure out what your competitors are doing and why. It's also a good time to seek and implement new technologies for improving efficiency and output.

SCORPIO (Oct. 24-Nov. 21). You'll catch your loved ones doing something right and give spontaneous and enthusiastic praise. You'll make someone happy while paving the way for the stellar results in the future.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21). If you are tenacious enough, you will have a breakthrough today. If the first or second attempt fails, you'll use what you learn, adjust the plan and go for round three.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19). The more people you know, the luckier you'll be. Smile and say "Hi." Also, ask friends to introduce you to the people they know.

New contacts will be the catalyst for a windfall or romance.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18). No one develops alone. You'll enjoy letting others know what you've learned from them. And you'll continue to let new connections help launch and support your growth.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20). Look for the good news hidden in the bad. Maybe it will only amount to a speck of sunshine, but that's enough to illuminate other pieces of goodness and change the way everyone sees things.

TODAY'S BIRTHDAY (Jan. 17). Your personal life blossoms as you assert yourself. Refuse to be put on the spot. Give yourself plenty of time and space to make major decisions. You'll advance projects having to do with communication and closing the gaps between people. March features domestic upgrades. You'll win money in June. Cancer and Virgo adore you. Your lucky numbers are: 40, 12, 22, 6 and 19.

ARIES YEAR AT A GLANCE 2012:

JANUARY: You'll be pleasantly surprised to find out that there are good-hearted individuals who simply need to give. FEBRUARY: Put off financial decisions until after the full moon on the 7th. Venus moves into your sign to turn up the romance. MARCH: The Mercury retrograde will strongly affect you. Put systems in place that will prevent you from making mistakes. APRIL: Mercury in your sign helps you get heard and be often understood. MAY: The more you can appreciate — and even love — about your circumstances, the better able you will be to mold them to your vision of the future. JUNE: The effects of Uranus square Pluto will be reflected in the microcosm of your personal life. The change you seek is possible. JULY: Fortune favors you as you explore new territory and are audacious in matters of love. AUGUST: A teacher will help along your quest for meaning, motivation and knowledge. SEPTEMBER: Venus sparks an exciting new connection. OCTOBER: You'll have the energy and time to tackle health and fitness related goals. NOVEMBER: Your romantic life will need attention. Love will be a roller coaster. DECEMBER: The final stretch of 2012 will favor moving or making the decisions that precede a relocation.

CELEBRITY PROFILES: The highly accomplished lawyer, scholar and wife of the 44th president of the United States describes herself first and foremost as Malia and Sasha's Mom. First Lady Michelle Obama was born when the sun and Mercury were in the highly traditional sign of Capricorn. Her natal moon, Mars and Saturn are in Aquarius, the sign of philanthropy, humanitarianism, technology and the future.

If you would like to write to Holiday Mathis, please go to www.creators.com and click on "Write the Author" on the Holiday Mathis page, or you may send her a postcard in the mail. To find out more about Holiday Mathis and read her past columns, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.

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