Saturday, December 22, 2012

Bertnews Christmas letter 2012

The Bertoglio "Year of the Babies"! This has been a joyous year for us! First was the February birth of Tina and Jon's 4th child and our 6th grandchild, Asher James Stone. Pat already had plane tickets in hand when he arrived and flew out to Champaign to be Grandma. She and I then made another trip to Illinois in the summer for my turn to visit Asher and his beautiful brothers and sister. What a fun time! In May Scott graduated from U of A and almost immediately he and Sarah moved to Chandler so he could go to work for Intel in corporate finance. She is attending ASU studying Elementary Ed (another teacher in the family!). Then in hot July we welcomed Carlie and Trevor's beautiful 3rd child, Charlotte Dyan Thompson. Trevor started working as a police officer in Clifton, AZ in June. He is welcomed home every week for a couple of days (after a 2 1/2 hour drive!) by his wife and kids. Recently they were told that there is a house available for them to rent in Clifton starting in January. We will be sad to see them leave town but are very happy they will be together as a family. And finally, in December we were so happy to greet little Conrad Simon Adams, Wendy and Chad's first child. He has a newly remodeled room in their house, which house is really taking shape, in the remodeling sense that is. Wendy is on leave from her job at Costco and Chad is working AND taking classes toward a degree in aeronautic engineering. All A's so far! Rachel is living at home although we don't see her much! As always, Pat keeps busy sewing baby blankets, burp cloths, making quilts and this year, clothes for the granddaughters' American Girl dolls. And also, of course, her kindergarteners love her! She is Compassionate Service leader in Relief Society. Dave continues teaching high school Spanish and now Sunday School Gospel Doctrine. He has been making some noise about possibly-- going out as a "single" and trying to get some places to hire him to play and sing. Pat and he get together once a month or so with other empty-nester couples and have a meal and visit. Life over all is pretty quiet... except when the kids and grandkids are here, which we LOVE! As always, we feel very fortunate and blessed in so many ways and we are thankful. We wish all a wonderful and prosperous New Year. We would love to hear from you! Email us at

Sunday, February 19, 2012

A Guest of Disney

This week I noticed on Facebook that my friend from high school Tony Toscano, movie critic and all around bon vivant, was coming to Scottsdale, AZ to a promotional event for Disney's new movie, "John Carter". I wrote back jokingly that he should drive down to Tucson to visit. He asked instead if I could come there, meet the cast, director and producers and go to a screening. As it happened, I was taking the day off school to drive Pat to the Gateway airport in Gilbert so I told him that I would take him up on the offer!

I drove to the beautiful Boulders resort in WAY north Scottsdale and found Tony. We chatted by the pool a while and then went to The Spotted Donkey restaurant for a bite. Then we went down to a private reception area and hobnobbed with lots of other film critics and reviewers. Local channel 9 reviewer Jim Ferguson (whose son Jim I had worked with at Santa Rita High School was there with his wife and a very tall grandson. The boy was Shea who I had in Spanish class for just one week there when I changed schools to my current site. Shea remembered me and gave me a big hug. He is now a freshman at ASU studying, what else? Television and Movie production. it was a fun coincidence to see him.

The food was of course wonderful particularly bacon-wrapped shrimp! Tony was very gracious and introduced me to everyone including Andrew Stanton, the director of the current release "John Carter" as well as Wall-E and Finding Nemo. Mr. Stanton was very pleasant as I asked him questions as to shooting locations, possibility of a sequel, etc. I also met the two producers one of whom had produced "Die Hard" and "Hunt for Red October" both Bertoglio family favorites. Disney know how to throw a party!

We were loaded into vans and were driven to a Scottsdale theater where we checked our phones and cameras (they even wanded us before we went in) gave us our complimentary medium popcorn and soft drink and sat us in the press section. The movie itself was filled with action but personally, I didn't think too much of it.

We arrived back at the Boulders at about 10:30PM and I said a hasty goodbye to Tony as I had to drive back to Tucson but I had a marvelous time! The only disappointment was that Tony thought that the cast would be at the reception and/or screening. I was mostly looking forward to meeting Willem DaFoe and Bryan Cranston mostly and my wife and daughters looked forward to my meeting Taylor Kitsch! In any case it was a very fun evening thanks to my friend. As Uncle Max Detweiller says in "The Sound of Music": "I love rich people. I love how I live when I'm with them!"