I made a few modifications - using mini cupcakes instead of regular size (it calls for 24 cupcakes), and I couldn't find the Newman's chocolate cookies they call for, so I subbed in chocolate covered graham crackers.
Here are the cupcakes (baked without wrappers) laid out in the form of the 'gator.
Whipping the color into the buttercream frosting. It called for a 'murky green' color. I mixed leaf green, willow green, a little blue, and a little red - all in the Wilton gel colorings.
Partially frosted. Yes, you see 2 colors of frosting there. No idea what happened. I only made one batch, but did divide it into 2 bags. I thought maybe the heat from my hands warmed up the buttercream, making it absorb more color?
Almost done! The eyes are a marshmallow covered in frosting & dotted with Jr. Mints. The tail looks darker because I scraped off the first round of frosting & repiped it to look a little more uniform. That bothered me much more than the difference in color.
Chocolate covered graham cracker scales, marshmallow teeth, Runts for claws, & Jelly Belly nostrils. You can hardly see the color difference with the other stuff on him.
Happy Birthday to our Big J!