We are having our second in a couple of weeks or so and I have a newly 5 year old.
My thoughts are these........
I keep feeling this really adverse reaction when people (like my folks) say "Oh, we'll take Katie for you after the baby comes if you want!". I feel like the message is that for a time, the baby is more important. And, IMHO, he won't be. He'll be AS an important person in the family, but not more so than my other child. So I don't want to send the message to my daughter that she needs to be "sent away".
I also don't want to over stress her. If this baby is a cryer, if she gets worn out from waking in the night........whatever........if she simply needs to get away for herself, thats ok to.
But, for me, it's going to be her choice. I'm not PLANNING on "sending her away" because, knowing my daughter, I think her excitement at being a big sister and having a new baby and wanting to help out will outweight anything. BUT we've also made semi plans with my folks to let her go stay with them for a few days if SHE needs it. If she seems to be getting cranky or taking it hard or acting out because she may feel neglected, I'd offer the "treat" of going to grandma and grandpas........but ONLY if SHE needs it. I'm going to be a mom of two, and IMO that starts the day the baby is born. All the bonding, all the "chilling out".......I intend to do that with my DH and DD right there by my side.