Well, because I'm a lazy person, I didn't have any of the kids' official birth certificates. In Kansas (I'm not sure whether this is true for other states) you have to send in a request for a birth certificate, you don't receive one automatically. Well, I've always forgotten, and whenever we've had to prove that one of the kids existed we've been able to use their Social Security Card and immunization record.
For the financial aid thing for Bob's training, however, that won't work. We did manage to find documentation that would work, but we decided to go ahead and order the birth certificates, which would have made this all much easier.
If you want to get a birth certificate from the Kansas Office of Vital Statistics, you have to jump through a few hoops. You can order easily online, if you want to pay an extra $9 per birth certificate. I wasn't willing to do that, so I got the stuff together to mail in. First you have to fill in a form, no problem, but it was a pain to do this three times. And they needed a copy of my driver's license, but that is reasonable. It costs $12 to get one certified copy. Which meant $36 all together -- and this doesn't include shipping back to you. You have to send one self addressed stamped envelope per request. If they can't find your record (which I doubt will be a problem here) then they keep the $12. Just to let you know. . .