I like to talk. So, not surprisingly, I’m currently raising three very opinionated little girls who talk constantly! And my poor husband, the introvert that he is, can’t quite escape the chatter. Ever.

Until we discovered the “Quiet Hat.”

The #QuietHat was given to me on Paddy’s Day 2012, but because of its offensive size and ridiculousness it never made it past our front door. It has, instead, become our Quiet Hat. And let me explain its magic.

Whenever I start to feel overwhelmed by the whys and the why nots and my #momrage starts to bubble inside of me and my eyelids turn red, instead of throwing my kids outside in January I simply put on my Quiet Hat and receive magical power: the power NOT to talk.

Mommy, I want another cracker!

Just stir your spaghetti sauce in peace, Jonna.

Mommy, she ripped out my Barbie doll’s hair!!

Sip that sweet sweet caffeinated nectar and keep turning the pages of your magazine, girl.

Its magic is pure brilliance!

The beauty behind the Quiet Hat is that it’s concrete. So instead of saying “Please be quiet,” or “Mommy needs to be silent now,” your kids can actually SEE what “quiet” means. The putting-on-of-the-hat signifies that mama means business and that she won’t be talking back UNTIL the Hat comes off—which could be minutes, hours, or days.

Of course I had to teach my kids what the Hat meant, and sure, it took a few times, but eventually they understood what I needed: the space to be human and take a time-out just like everyone else.

Sometimes we mamas can find this solace in the bathroom (after we’ve locked ourselves inside while weeping); other times we can find it in our closets while our children pound on the door screaming for veggie straws. But rarely do we find our quiet moments alone. It’s just not in the cards for us when we’re raising hairy little wild things who “could eat you up they love you so!”

That’s why the Quiet Hat is amazing! It allows you to remain present WHILE attending to your own needs!

Also, the Hat shows your children that you, too, need the time to breathe and recharge. It therefore models how they can identify this need within themselves too. My oldest and middle child will sometimes use the Quiet Hat when they’ve had enough of each other, and I love to watch them assert their needs this way!

So get yourself a Quiet Hat, mama. Maybe it won’t look like mine, but it should be halfway ridiculous, because the other part of its magic is that it has the power to break fire with humor. Almost always after two minutes of wearing it I catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror and start laughing (because it really is obscene), and once I start laughing I eventually take the Hat off and give my kids what they really want most: another dose of talking to Mom.