There are lots ways and places to play in Seattle, so you and your wife are going to have fun and enjoy living in Seattle!
As Kary mentioned below, you do need to know how long you plan on being in Seattle and how likely your wife may be hired outside of Seattle when she graduates. To buy you should be planning on being in that house for at least 3 to 5 years, if your long range plans are too up in the air, then renting would be the better course of action.
When I decided to move to Seattle, I found a book called "Seattle Survival Giude II" to be very helpful to find out more about the neighborhoods and areas around Seattle. There is much newer edition called "Seattle Survival Guide 4th Edition" :
Which I think you will find helpful.
Since your wife will be attending UW, and you are going to be working in Des Moines (my avian vet is at the Des Moines Veterinary Hospital) you would have the reverse commute if you lived closer to UW. Although, real estate is pricier closer to Seattle and the Burien, Nomandy Park and Des Moines towns are generally modestly priced. You may want to consider West Seattle, or more urban Columbia City, or Madison Valley as in between areas.
So you must let us know what Fun is to you both, that makes a difference in what areas or neighborhoods you would want to consider so we can point you in the direction that fits your lifestyle! Seattle has a wonderful, wide selection of fun things to do and see.... what appeals to you? Let us know so we can make suggestions!
You are so going to enjoy living here in Seattle!