The day started with his traditional birthday pancake. (See also below: birthdays; 2 and 3, with free pirate face thrown in for good measure.)
Then later that night we met with Keith's mom, brother (Kyle in the picture below) and sister for dinner (including pudding dirt cup for the birthday boy), and the Making of the Build-A-Bear. This is the birthday event Ari has most looked forward to for months. He chose a zebra, named him Zip, and promptly added him to the stash of other 'friends' in his room.
Saturday dawned a lovely day for a Chinese-themed birthday party. I prepped and finished all of the dessert sushi on Friday, so only minor cleaning and decorations were in order on Saturday morning. We had a red and gold color theme, with Chinese lanterns, koi fish and dragons spread about. We played Chinese Bingo with our guests (okay, just regular old Bingo with Chinese-themed picture), and made a very lovely and involved dragon craft, then sang to the birthday boy and ate dessert sushi. He opened many gifts and had a wonderful time. Our guests wore Asian-themed outfits, which I just loved. Ari and Owen wore long-sleeved silk outfits in red and blue, and Eva wore a silk dress in pink, all ordered from Orient Box. They were gorgeous and the kids loved them. I think the party was a success, and Ari had a great time. He is still talking about his "Chinese" party. Earlier last week he was complaining daily that he did not want to turn 4, no birthday, no party, just stay 3. But now I think he's figured out that being 4 is okay with him.