Happy Chinese New Year! Gong hei fat choy!
The Chinese Lunar Calendar, as the name might suggest, records time using the moon rather than the sun (the Western system). This means that the new year can fall on a different date each year, in January or February.
It's the Year of the Ox. According to Asian folklore, people born in the Year of the Ox are strong, reliable, fair and conscientious, inspiring confidence in others.
To my knowledge, we don't have any Oxen in our immediate family. I was born in the Year of the Monkey. My father is a Rooster, my sister is a Pig, and both my mother and husband are horses. My sons are a Rat and a Tiger.
There are twelve animals in the Chinese Zodiac. Each has different character profiles. These can be further classified with the element—wood, fire, earth, metal, and water—associated with the year of birth. And, like the Western astrology signs, these profiles also include interpretations for compatible signs.
I am a Metal Monkey. Monkeys are known for their intelligence and humour (best traits), and immaturity and deceit (worst traits). A Metal Monkey, in particular, is said to be intellectually superior to other monkeys, independent, and fiscally responsible. And, hopefully this is a good sign, a monkey and horse are a positive pairing. << sigh of relief>>
I hope you found this (very brief) post on the Chinese zodiac of some interest. For more information, see Chinese Astrology: A Guide to Chinese Horoscopes by DJ Burns.
Happy New Year! I wish you great happiness and prosperity!