Growing up on a farm


Courtesy of Niko Bernal

By Bailey Lim

As the light of the early sun shines through the window’s blinds and the sound of the chickens flow through your ears, nobody has the choice but to get up. Waking up in the morning, people are used to hearing the birds chirping or the peaceful sound of a light breeze. Niko Bernal, a junior at Huntley High School, wakes up to the farm life. Having to wake up earlier than the average person, Bernal has more responsibilities than people would think.

The care for the animals on the farm are in Bernal’s hands because he has to feed and take care of them. The farm’s horses and cows get hay and he lets the dogs out to roam the property. 

Bernal lives with this family in the main house across a path from the main farm structure. He lives with his parents, his older sister, three dogs, and two cats in total. The experience may seem chaotic, but he has grown to love where he lives.

“As a young child, I honestly did not really like living here because it was so much different from a regular neighborhood. It took time for me to adjust, but living on the farm has grown on me,” Bernal said. 

On the land his family owns, he has the horse stables, the barn house, the main house, and a spare building. In his free time, Bernal can choose to do some outdoor activities that not everyone says they can do, such as horseback riding. 

There are plenty of things that the animals can be used for. The chickens lay eggs, he can spend time with his pets, or enjoy a nice outdoor day with his friends and family in general on the large property. 

“I can not imagine living somewhere else anymore because I have grown accustomed to my responsibilities and the process of having all the animals here,” Bernal said.

Bernal has gotten used to some things such as his clothes getting dirty easier, having an early wakeup schedule, or even remembering to feed the animals. It really is the experience of a lifetime to have the opportunity to take care of the animals. Living a farming lifestyle is challenging but there are plenty of more things that can create hobbies or entertainment.