If that's too ambitious, why not make Rob Ives's paper Santa automaton?
Though it's for sale in Pounds, the amount in U.S. Dollars will come out to about $5.75. Once you pay, you can download the pattern immediately. Open it in Adobe Acrobat Reader (free, if you don't have it already), print it out on some good paper and away you go. This is a great way to keep the kids busy during the pre-holiday -- in school or out!
Visit the Flying Pig page for the Laughing Santa Automaton