This week would be a good time to show the difference between the anomaly map and the actual temperature map. I like this week for that because the anomaly was cool across most of the country while the actual temperatures are still fairly warm. That makes a good contrast between the cooler than average temperatures that are still warm overall.
I think this is useful to help explain the anomaly map. So even though southern Texas is still hot, it is not much above or below normal. It is what is expected for this time of year. Western Arizona on the other hand is hot, but it is well below normal for this time of year. Overall the US as a whole was well below average this past week.
The Northwest continues the general trend for the year with below average temperatures. This is a typical pattern for a warm AMO year. Here are the past couple of weeks.
When comparing this week to previous years there are some warmer and some cooler. Nothing too far out of the ordinary.
2007 was really warm this time of year with two weeks in a row with almost nationwide above normal temperatures.
Hopefully this perspective of how weather contributes to the overall climate (albeit the US is only a small portion of the Earth’s climate) is useful. I know I enjoy seeing how the different seasons behave in very different ways in regards to the temperature anomaly.