Re: Portland Mamas
I would avoid the east side due to my fear of the unknown and preconception of its high crime rates. I am really loving the sw near multnomah village, garden home, and gabriel park. Outskirtswise I really like tigard, especially near summerlake park. Beaverton and aloha are nice, but the traffic annoys me, Hillsboro is really growing right now and has some pretty affordable places, but it is a trek to town if he is working downtown. I hear good things about tualatin, Sherwood, and Wilsonville too, but I have no personal experiences.
Oh and I lied a little about the east side, a few friends of ours have very much enjoyed Oregon City.
Vancouver is also very affordable and if we didn't mind the commute, we would be looking into it. We have a few family members up there who like it too.
I don't know how narrowed down that was, but I hope it helped a little.
Sarah: loving wife to Jeff, momma to Jack (3/07) and Ben (due 5/10)