We should get together. I took a couple terms of animation three years ago and was really into animating before I opened our school and lost all of my free time.
If you have Flash I can walk you through doing most of what you described. It sounds like you are more interested in doing motion graphics and some effects. All of that is pretty easy to achieve with Flash. I might even have some sample effects pieces lying around. I've also got a few animation 'theory' books lying around.
I've never animated in PhotoShop before so I wouldn't be of much assistance in the mechanics of that but I might be able to help you achieve more the 'look' your going for.