We have been struggling with server problems all day Friday, December 5. There have been sporadic problems nearly every day since installation to the new server earlier this year, but they have been very minor in comparison to today's issues.
The forum software seems to be connected somehow to this issue; when I turned off the forum late in the evening, it returned server load to normal within a few minutes. When I turned the forums back on, the load seems to be still near normal, but slowly climbing.
I don't know enough about the technical issues involved in this to fully understand the situation, so I have requested help from our Internet Presence Provider. We'll get this nailed back down as soon as possible.
My apologies for the frustrating delays in reading and posting.