My littlest turned 2 this month and I didn't decide on how to do the cake until 2 days before the party.
The wasn't really into anything except balls until about 2 days before his party. Then he felt he LOVE for Elmo. It took me 5 hours to trim all the cupcakes to an even size and then pipe the entire thing. The bottom portion of Elmo is actually a 9" cake I cut in half and layered since I ran out of cupcake papers.
I did fix the bottom of Elmo's face after I took the pics and also for some odd reason the cupcakes on the right didn't want to fit together.... then I ran out of chocolate frosting for the outside.... twice... so said "$%#& IT!" and didn't bother trying to cover the empty spots on the side. Then when I went to write, 'Happy Birthday ******" !' on the top cloud..... the gel RAN! GAAAH!! Good thing I could cover it with sprinkles!
Even with it not being perfect it got me a job making a cake later next month for a neighbor's birthday! Yay!
It tasted yummy (even though I didn't eat any until the next day- I didn't want cake after working on it so long)! Butter cake(boxed! eek!) and butter cream icing (homemade) for the colored spots and I used chocolate funfetti icing for the outside.