Helping people with computers... one answer at a time.
If odd things happen when you start Internet Explorer, one of the first places to look is spyware.
When I log onto the net, my internet explorer opens... first with a white screen and the letters dy in the upper left corner. I refresh and then get my intended IE page. How can I get rid of the 'dy' page? The properties say it's html and I can't get it gone.
I'd try resetting your home page (Tools, Internet Options, General tab) first. I'm hesitant only because you said that a refresh gets you where you expect, and this wouldn't explain that.
Unfortunately I don't have any good suggestions other than suspecting spyware. I'd run a spyware scan and see what that turns up.