This is about the simplest way I could think of to show you why the weather has been so horrific lately. It's basically been a matter of two things.

First, cold air has been very persistent across the Midwest and Northeast.

Obviously, before it can snow, it has to be cold. Normally, even during the dead of winter, there are fluctuations between cold weather and somewhat milder conditions, but that hasn't been the case recently.

Second, there has been an abundance of storms which have all funneled right into the mid-Atlantic region. Moreover, two of the storms have been real powerhouses. Normally, only one storm of this magnitude occurs every four or five years. This winter season, there have been three already! Will there be more? The pattern is still ripe for more fun and games, but nothing big looms on the horizon at this time.

Story by AccuWeather.com Senior Meteorologist John Kocet.