According to Wikipedia, January is the first month of the year in the Julian and Gregorian calendars and one of seven months with the length of 31 days. It is, on average, the coldest month of the year within most of the Northern Hemisphere and the warmest month of the year within most of the Southern Hemisphere.
It starts on the same day of the week as October in common years, and starts on the same day of the week as April and July in leap years. In a common year, January ends on the same day of the week as February and October, and ends on the same day of the week as July in a leap year.
The name January comes from ancient Roman religion and mythological name of Janus. Encyclopedia Mythica states that Janusis is the Roman god of gates and doors (ianua), beginnings and endings. He is represented with a double-faced head, each looking in opposite directions. He was worshipped at the beginning of the harvest time, planting, marriage, birth, and other types of beginnings, especially the beginnings of important events in a person's life. Janus also represents the transition between primitive life and civilization, between the countryside and the city, peace and war, and the growing-up of young people.
As the door closes on the year 2012 and a new one opens to 2013, may you find peace and harmony as you reflect on your accomplishments of the past, while receiving encouragement and support to overcome the challenges you face in the year ahead.