Do you ever feel like when you take your kids in public people are looking at you? There are usually two reasons behind the stares. Let's use the grocery store as an example.
Your kids look super cute and put together. Friendly people smile, and some even interact with you and your little blessings. Your kid(s) is sitting in the cart, stroller or carrier in a calm and collective fashion. Maybe she's even communicating with you with her inside voice. In your head, you're proudly thinking "Wow. I think I finally nailed this parenting thing." I like to call this the "good outing".
Your child is kicking and screaming (maybe for you to let her eat the unwashed strawberries in the cart...maybe so you'll buy a bag of jumbo marshmallows that will go stale in the pantry because "no, you're not eating those.") Your kid is refusing to sit in the front of the cart where she belongs, so you put her in the section designated for all of the food. Yet, she still ignores you when you ask her for the 18th time to sit down on her bottom. Now you look like a really awesome parent as your child stands unbuckled ignoring your every word and hanging over the side of the cart. Oh, and you've only hit the produce section. Sometimes you break down and let your child walk. (I'm referring to my two-year-old daughter. I bet you could have guessed.) This is when she takes off in a dead sprint down the aisle, laughing hysterically, because she knows she has manipulated me into making the worst decision possible...letting her lose. She's tired. She's hungry. She's off the rails. The term "little blessing" hasn't crossed your mind. The "not so good outing" is much longer than the "good outing" scenario. If I'm being honest, this is how most outings go with a two-year-old and two-month old.
I guess what I am getting at is that a trip out is stressful enough with all the little's shenanigans. I'm not sure why people add to it with looks of annoyance or "hey lady get your kids in order." I swear I am trying my best to raise polite, kind and decent human beings. But not every day with them is as simple as 1,2,3. My point: cut moms some slack when you see us struggling in public. Most likely, we aren't bad parents; we are just having a bad day. And to answer the question, paper. Always paper. So she can do this later at home.