Please put down that homemade popsicle for a second because I have some shocking news.
School is starting soon.
Seems like just last week my child was finishing his year of Kindergarten, but I guess time knows no mercy when it comes to the fleeting joy of summer vacation. We’ve had a wonderful time off from the early morning school routine but it’s time to prepare for the upcoming year. For me that means prepping my children’s immune systems for back to school. This year my daughter will start preschool and for most kids the initial year of school is quite the adjustment both emotionally and physically. She will face the new viruses and bacteria that come with the start of school and as a result her immune system will be required to work harder than normal. One of the ways I prepare both my kids for back to school is by giving them elderberry syrup on a daily basis for 2 weeks before the big first day of the school year. Elderberry is high in antioxidants and has long been used as a natural immune boosting medicine. I use it when my children are sick and I also use it as a precautionary measure throughout the school year.
For my kids I give 1 tablespoon 3-4 times a week for general immune boosting. If my kids are sick I give 2 tablespoons divided throughout the day (one tablespoon in the morning and one in the evening) on a daily basis until they are well again.
We used to buy our elderberry syrup (this is the brand I use when I don’t make my own) because I kept telling myself I didn’t have time to MAKE ONE MORE THING! But then I actually figured out that making homemade elderberry syrup is a breeze and it’s so cost effective I’d be a fool not to make it. And since I try to avoid foolishness as much as possible…we now make our elderberry syrup. I buy these elderberries and I keep them in the freezer when I’m not using them. We combine the elderberry juice with raw honey and the kids love it. I hope you love it, too.
Happy back to school! Stay healthy 🙂
- 1 cup dried elderberries
- 4 cups filtered water
- 1 cup raw honey
- 3 slices fresh ginger (optional)
- 2 sticks cinnamon or 2 teaspoons mullein leaves for added immune boosting power.
In a small saucepan combine the dried elderberries (and any of the optional ingredients) and water. Heat over medium/low heat at a low simmer for about 45 minutes to an hour. The water will reduce by about half.
When the liquid is finished simmering, mash up the elderberries with a potato masher to get out any extra juice. Strain liquid through a mesh sieve into a glass jar and let cool.
When the mixture is no longer hot but still warm, add the raw honey and stir to combine. Put lid on jar and place in the fridge. Mixture will last about 1 month refrigerated.
Use: When child is sick use 2 tablespoons per day (1 tablespoon in the morning and one tablespoon at night before bed). For ongoing use during cold and flu season take 1 tablespoon 3-4 times a week.