The snow, ice, and bitter cold temperatures the Tri-State, and a majority of the country, experienced last week certainly took its toll on productivity as numerous schools and businesses shut down until things warmed up a bit. It also took its toll on donations to the American Red Cross who were already facing an emergency need for blood.

They didn't mince words in an e-mail newsletter I received on Monday:

...the terrifyingly cold weather in large parts of the country has taken a toll. It's caused power outages, work and school closings, and danger to the health and well-being of millions of people. Many blood drives have been cancelled, and many regular donors have not been able to make their appointments. Donors living in unaffected areas are especially key right now. If you're safely able to get to a donation center or blood drive, please do it as soon as you can. Patients really need your help.

If you haven't given in a while (guilty, party of one right here), now is the time to change that by visiting the Red Cross Donation website and setting up an appointment.