you're almost exactly a year late. exactly a year ago, I was living in boise, and I also had a mini-14 (I still do, over there). I may eventually come back some day. the only problem with that is that I'm in thailand right now, and I'm tenured here (kind of) for the next few years, and then I'm off to burma.
anyway, look around for some tips and tricks on your mini- upgrade it, it's a great gun but theres a lot of things that I don't really like about it (the gas system, mainly, because it- along with the thin barrel- keeps the gun from being as accurate as it should be), but it's a great starter gun. I don't regret buying mine at all, even if I regret some design decisions ruger made.
"...he defined leadership with the following two words: follow me."
Richard Marcinko, referring to Roy Boehm