CHICAGO (CBS) — Admit it – we’ve been spoiled this year as fall transitions into winter.

Snowfall has amounted to a mere trace, and temperatures have remained balmy enough that a light jacket has been a comfortable option all through the season so far.

That will all be changing this week. Come Friday, if you forget your winter coat, hat and gloves, you’ll be sorry.

CBS 2 Meteorologist Megan Glaros says the high for Monday is a fairly pleasant 40 degrees, albeit with scattered rain showers or snow flurries.

But a cold front will come through, cutting the high every day this week. The high for Tuesday is 36, Wednesday 35, and Thursday 34. And on Friday, January will be on your mind as the high tops out at a mere 27 degrees, and the overnight low drops to an arctic 19.

And for the wind chill? We’ll just have to wait and find out.

The good news is that while you may need the winter coat, you won’t have to disturb the spider webs that have accumulated on your snow shovel as it sits idle in the garage.

No measurable snow is forecast anytime this week, and as it is now, 2011 already ranks eighth among years in which we’ve gone this late without any measurable snowfall.

The latest first snowfall was on Dec. 16, 1965, followed by Dec. 14, 2001, and Dec. 12, 1946.

Glaros says every year in which 0.1 inches of snow did not fall by this point ended up having a below average snowfall for the entire winter.

Unfortunately, long-range forecasts indicate just the opposite for this winter.

AccuWeather has predicted temperatures 2 to 3 degrees colder than normal, and nearly twice the normal amount of snowfall. The agency’s long-range forecast predicts the Chicago area will be hit with 50 to 58 inches of snow in total – at least 20 inches above normal.

The Farmers’ Almanac also said to expect Chicago to get slammed this winter.

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