Thanks for all the help on this. Maybe it's time to switch host.
I've disabled my image gallery plugin and tested right after; site is quick as can be. Then I re-enable the plugin, and the site is quick as can be. It is so random that I can't figure it out. Log files are clean. I have yet to run it on a local system, but that will be a time consuming test.
I also installed habari with 5 of my articles, 5 images, no plugins. Was going good for awhile, then some tests would take 5 minutes for the page to load.