Sometimes things just don't come easy... making you more grateful when they manage to finally come together. I struggled with this cake and feel like I just barely pulled it off. A long-time family friend of ours, Ashley, asked me to make a "Little Mermaid" cake for her 4 year old daughter and showed me the party plates. She didn't care what I did - which, as you all know by now, thrills me way more than anything cake-related should. Along with the obvious (Ariel, Founder, and Sebastian), I knew I wanted to do a brown octopus arm on the bottom of the cake (see photo below). I also knew I wanted to do a silly little baby octopus in some shade of lavender. I had great aspirations for this cake, but alas, everything that could have gone wrong seemingly did. More parts broke on this cake than my last dozen cakes combined. On top of that, poor Ariel isn't "right" (but she's a lot better than my trial run Arial who had a strange resemblance to a gorilla). I put my fingers into the finished butter cream at least 4 times while decorating this cake. But even with all the "oops" moments, I still loved doing the fondant work for it. [Note to any potential "beach-themed" cake makers: SAND GOES LAST.] Cake is WASC with whipped vanilla bean filling and icing, all details are fondant and are completely edible - except the shish-ka-bab stick holding up the "Happy Birthday Presley" sign. I've gotten into the habit of watching the movies my cakes are based on as a means of research, so Molly and I watched The Little Mermaid together. Neither of us really remembered seeing it before and it was sweet to take a trip back in time. No wonder this movie is such a classic. For little reasons like this and countless others, I get so much more out of my cake-making than anyone knows.