We used to live in Seattle, and moved to Tacoma when we both ended up working down here, and we like it a lot.
We live in North Tacoma, and I am very comfortable having two kids here. If anything, I prefer it over Seattle - there is much more of a small town feel, we have neighbors who are home much more, and I feel like everyone is just a bit into everyone else's business - enough that I feel safe, but not enough that I feel "watched" iykwim. For instance, the first time our nanny was out front with dd1 and she started having a screaming mimi about something, our neighbor across the street walked over to make sure everything was ok. Our nanny didn't appreciate that, but I sure liked knowing our neighbors would respond to my kids' screams!
That said, you do have to be a bit fussy about your neighborhoods. I wouldn't live hilltop adjacent, like some of our friends do - we paid more for a smaller house just to be in this particular neighborhood - but even the "bad" neighborhoods are improving rapidly as folks from Seattle and other higher COLA areas move in and fix stuff up. This neighborhood is not crime free by any means, but I think we have had one or two burglaries in the last five years. Mostly, we get car prowls and kids stealing stuff from our yard. The flamingos were the first to go. Sniff.
As for the commute, my dh is job hunting right now and has said he would feel perfectly comfy taking a job in Seattle. You can park at the Dome and take Sounder into downtown pretty easily. If your dh works in one of the outlying areas, though, it would be tougher.
Oh, I just noticed in your post the addresses that you are looking at. Ok, 54th/K I wouldn't mind living in - it is a predominately working class sort of neighborhood, and has always looked tidy and quiet and safe to me. 25th/Sheridan I would consider hilltop adjacent - see my earlier comments. As I said, though, we have a lot of friends in that area, and they are perfectly happy there. Just my .02 - and probably worth about that.