This is a monthly series in which we recommend the best things to do this month based on your horoscope, as read by Alison Lasek. Astrology not your thing? Skip straight to the culturescopes for what to do with all those feelings – and the appropriate barista-made McCafé iced coffee to sip while you’re doing it.

December is a breath of fresh air. We’ve come out of an intense and transformative time, with October’s eclipses followed by Scorpio season, and it’s challenging to stay in darker places for too long.

Sagittarius is symbolised by the archer shooting for the stars, and the new moon on December 13 is a powerful opportunity to channel that optimism into 2024. Mercury retrograde starts on the same day, blocking forward momentum and creating tech disruptions – use it as a time for reflection before the new year rolls around.

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Capricorn season begins on December 22 and asks us to get serious about our goals. This practical, grounded earth sign inspires us to take the steps we need to get the job done.

Aries

Your mind will be more open around the new moon, and chance encounters can help you see things in a fresh light. In the last week of the month, you’ll have an urge to learn new things, challenge your perspective or share your ideas with the world. Your career might also heat up, with promising opportunities coming your way.

Culturescope: Now’s the time to open your mind and learn something new. Explore your potential with creative online classes – such as editing Instagram reels, making music with a Grammy Award winner or painting watercolour florals.

Coffeescope: McCafé Deluxe Vanilla Iced Coffee – for when you need a solid hit of espresso to fuel your ideas and newfound passions, with milk and vanilla-flavoured syrup over ice. A swirl of whipped cream and choc powder won’t go amiss, either.

Taurus

The new moon on the 13th may inspire you to explore the depths of your inner world and jump-start some personal transformations. Take time for yourself and tune into what’s capturing your attention. When Capricorn season begins, you’ll be ready to experience new things, expand your perspective and connect with new ideas.

Culturescope: You don’t have to choose between an exhibition and a live show when German electro pioneers Kraftwerk bring their latest tour to Australia. Dance along to a fusion of electronic music, computer animations and performance art.

Coffeescope: McCafé Iced Long Black – to stay energised, open to new experiences and sensory stimulation, fuel your curiosity with strong espresso, chilled water and ice.

Gemini

When was the last time you went on a date? The new moon on the 13th may inspire those in relationships to make an extra effort, while exciting new opportunities might present themselves to single Geminis. Surface-level conversations may start to bore you in Capricorn season, so be sure to connect with the people closest to you – including yourself.

Culturescope: It’s an important time for introspection and processing, and writing them down can help. This might be the time to make journaling a habit, and it doesn’t need much – just pick up a notebook, start writing and see what comes out.

Coffeescope: McCafé Deluxe Hazelnut Iced Coffee – if your emotions are running a bit nuts, this espresso-based iced coffee with hazelnut-flavoured syrup, whipped cream and choc powder might help you feel grounded.

Cancer

If you’ve been meaning to get outside during the day, do it. The new moon injects energy and supports good intentions – but you still need to put in the effort. Your focus will stay on your closest relationships this Capricorn season. Can you carve out some quieter moments to create lasting connections?

Culturescope: Always wanted to start running? Forget new year’s resolutions – the best time is now. Kic founder Laura Henshaw has a few simple tips for beginners, including starting slow and inviting a friend.

Coffeescope: McCafé Iced Latte – to cool down after all that exercise, reward yourself with a shot of espresso, milk, sugar syrup and ice, especially as the weather warms up.

Leo

The new moon offers a fresh start around your leisure time. You may want to kick off a side hustle, start a romance or take up a hobby. Capricorn season is the time to launch those healthy habits you’ve been thinking about for a while; any proactive efforts you start now will be easier to maintain in the new year.

Culturescope: Get ready to level up your regular viewing schedule. ACMI’s online platform features new releases, timeless classics and rediscovered gems from its archive of past programs.

Coffeescope: McCafé Deluxe Crème Brûlée Iced Coffee – when you’re ready for something new, try a shot of espresso with milk and crème brûlée flavoured syrup, poured over ice and topped with whipped cream and toffee crumbs.

Virgo

The new moon on the 13th may have you focused on your abode, whether that’s moving, renovating or finding a home away from home. Capricorn season injects fresh energy into the part of your chart relating to pleasure – a fabulous time for dating if you’re single, or a cue to turn up the romance in your relationship.

Culturescope: Break in your new kitchen (or cook on the camp stove while doing renos) with Griff Pamment’s Thai red-curry soup, a versatile recipe that’ll make you feel at home no matter the setting.

Coffeescope: McCafé Deluxe Crème Brûlée Iced Coffee – when you’re feeling playful, a shot of espresso, milk and crème brûlée flavoured syrup with ice, whipped cream and toffee crumb will do the trick.

Libra

The new moon on the 13th brings opportunities to speak up in new ways. Expressing your needs can make you feel vulnerable, but it’s a great way to push yourself further. This Capricorn season, it’s important to have a cosy home environment. Give yourself what you need so you can show up for your loved ones.

Culturescope: Elevate your home with inspo from designer Sarah Andrews. Her new book Poetry of Spaces takes you through five elemental themes, with examples from homes around the globe.

Coffeescope: McCafé Deluxe Caramel Iced Coffee – indulge your vulnerable side with smooth espresso, milk and caramel-flavoured syrup over ice, topped with whipped cream and choc powder.

Scorpio

Stop avoiding the discomfort of asking for what you’re worth at work – the new moon brings motivation to ask for that pay rise, apply for that new job or start that side hustle. Interactions with your friends or the community may bring new opportunities, so take time to connect. Relish simple pleasures when life gets overwhelming.

Culturescope: Let the rhythm of your footsteps be the backdrop to meaningful conversations, culminating in a rejuvenating swim – here are Australia’s best capital city walks that end in a dip.

Coffeescope: McCafé Iced Mocha – this combo of espresso, milk and chocolate syrup over ice goes down a treat after a walk or swim (or both).

Sagittarius

The new moon on the 13th may inspire you to refresh your identity. You’re closing out one chapter of life to make room for the next – go for it. December can be expensive; reinvent your relationship with money when Capricorn season hits. This might mean finding new income streams or finally getting that pay rise you deserve.

Culturescope: Put a fresh face forward with homegrown beauty brands like Go-To, Ultra Violette, Grown Alchemist and Rationale. Feel confident being seen and taking that step outside your comfort zone.

Coffeescope: McCafé Iced Latte – keep things simple with a comforting drink as you take that next step – enjoy a shot of espresso with milk and sugar syrup poured over ice.

Capricorn

On the new moon on the 13th, look back over the last 12 months and consider how well you managed the art of living. Where in your life have you been feeling stuck? What patterns do you want to liberate yourself from? All eyes are on you this Capricorn season – you may feel like treating yourself to a new look.

Culturescope: If your locks have been flying free, this may be the time to blow it out, even if it’s just for those special moments that need extra bounce.

Coffeescope: McCafé Iced Long Black – step out in style and with a little extra pep in your step with a strong espresso, water and ice.

Aquarius

With the new moon on the 13th, you may find yourself dreaming bigger, with greater confidence in what you want for the future. Capricorn season is all about you. Create opportunities for self-reflection, connecting with what’s possible and letting go of anything holding you back.

Culturescope: Invest in a personal exploration of the upcoming year with a personal 2024 astrology forecast to unveil major themes and areas of focus. Consider it a roadmap for a year of alignment and self-discovery.

Coffeescope: McCafé Iced Latte – treat yourself to the simplicity of a shot of espresso with milk and sugar syrup poured over ice, and enjoy it mindfully.

Pisces

Spend some time thinking about your career goals during the new moon on the 13th; it’s a potent time for visioning and planning. You’ll feel social this Capricorn season and won’t be short on invitations. But don’t get too caught up in the silly season or you’ll miss a magical opportunity to dream big.

Culturescope: Be inspired to go after your dreams with Wonka, starring Timothee Chalamet as the extraordinary inventor, magician, and chocolatier of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – in cinemas from December 14.

Coffeescope: McCafé Iced Mocha: Lean into the chocolate-y drinks this season, with this combo of espresso, milk and chocolate syrup over ice.

This article is produced by Broadsheet in partnership with McDonald’s.