A much-needed breather in the weather has arrived for our midweek in New England, with enough dry air to push out most of the clouds Wednesday morning with sunshine coupling with a wind that shifts to blow from the southwest by afternoon to push temperatures over 40 degrees for most of Central and Southern New England. Sunshine will fade during the late afternoon as clouds arrive hundreds of miles in advance of an approaching storm center, chock full of moisture from the Pacific and Gulf of Mexico and poised to produce a post-midnight wintry mess for much of New England Wednesday night into Thursday. For the South Coast and anywhere within about 40 miles of the South Coast, nearly all rain is expected. Farther north, amounts increase from a coating to an inch or two moving north through the Massachusetts Turnpike corridor, and two to four inches from far northern and western Massachusetts into Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine, with half a foot in the mountains. The rain/snow line that starts far south quickly springs north Thursday morning, riding all the way into Southern New Hampshire by mid-morning and leaving periodic rain in the southern half of New England for the remainder of Thursday with snow north of that until drier air purges precipitation late in the day, allowing colder and drier air to move in from Thursday night all the way through Saturday. Although the snow may end up sloppy after being rained on, getting it cleared off the driveway where it lingers Thursday afternoon or evening would be a great idea before it freezes in place for a few to several days - high temperatures Friday and Saturday will only be in the 20s south and teens to single digits north, with Sunday bringing a shifting wind for more moderate air, increasing clouds, but likely a mostly dry day. Next week, our weather turns unsettled again in our exclusive First Alert 10-day forecast, but it looks like warmer-than-normal conditions persist for more raindrops than snowflakes in Southern New England, though the chance for wintry precipitation will be higher in the north.