Oh, a big painting? I gotta see that, Old Bean! Send the photo over!
I am really glad to hear that you have gotten over that slump. There's nothing like a good (big, complicated) project to take your mind off the big picture and just let you focus on the details. I find that very cathartic, too. I mean, just look at me, I cut paper!
I'm glad to hear that you've been able to help your friends and Annette out at the same time, too. That's killing two birds with one stone right there. In the meantime, please keep me posted, I'd be interested to know how things are going with the two of you!