(CNN) -- It's been five days since Hurricane Ike smashed into the Texas coast, but people are still struggling mightily with its effects.
Flags of the United States and Texas fly where homes stood in Gilchrist, Texas, before Ike's wrath came ashore.
From the destroyed coastline, to far inland where evacuees are seeking shelter, to communities in the Midwest where the storm dumped flooding rains, CNN's affiliates are reporting on the rebuilding of lives.
Wrecked homes and possessions strewn around the ubiquitous sludge were the sights awaiting residents of Galveston, some of whom were allowed to check their property on Wednesday, KHOU reported.
Paula Munoz said although the damage to the family's El Rey restaurant was worse than she could have imagined, they still planned to rebuild. "We spent 10 years paying off this place," she told KHOU. "We'll rebuild, and we'll do it here. Where else would we go? This is our life."
But there was some relief for Maria Patina, who was worried she had lost everything. When she saw her house was standing, she rushed inside, grabbed a statue of Jesus and said: "Thank you, God." Read KHOU's report on going back to Galveston
Crystal Beach, Texas
Frank and Dee Ann Sherman huddled in the attic of their beachfront home in Crystal Beach as Hurricane Ike ripped the house apart -- washing walls out to sea and lifting up what remained only to smash it down, KHOU said. Watch the Shermans tell their amazing survival story »
Somehow the roof stayed on and they survived, but they are not being allowed back into the ruins, not even to retrieve the ashes of their dead daughter.
The couple said they were frustrated with complaints by people better off than them. "We see all of these people that are crying and moaning because they got some mud on their floor or their lights are out in Houston," Frank Sherman told KHOU.
"We don't see anything about our friends that died in Crystal Beach and about the fact that our world is totally devastated. I'm 60 years old and I have to start my life all over again." Read how the Shermans contacted KHOU when they found they couldn't escape
Brazoria County, Texas
Patty Smith fled Brazoria County and evacuated to Austin before the storm. She still does not know whether she has a home to return to, KVUE said.
"It's like a nightmare. You look at your house when you pack up to leave and you're like 'Am I going to see this again'?" she said.
Right now she's now relying on donations and just making it through each day. "We don't even know if we're going to have the money to pay our bills. It's that bad. My husband hasn't been able to work since we left," she said. Read KVUE's report on how Austin residents and workers are trying to help
Parents still staying at the Austin Convention Center are trying to stay strong for their kids, News 8 reported, but they say it is getting harder. Watch Homeland Security boss discuss plans to help evacuees »
William Jones said the hardest part was trying to talk to his two daughters about their home.
"I just tell them the truth and keep it simple," he said. "I don't try to sugarcoat it, so they know this is a real serious situation, but it's just hard on everybody right now," he told the station. Read what young victims are telling News 8
San Antonio, Texas
Kevin Green's mind was on laundry as he spent another day in a shelter in San Antonio, Texas, after getting out of Houston to avoid Ike.
"I've been washing these clothes out and putting them on every day," he told KSAT.
The Salvation Army said there would be enough clothes to hand out to evacuees, but there were concerns about making sure distribution was fair, KSAT said. Read KSAT report on how a planned clothing donation was stopped
Tempers are running hot in Cincinnati even as hundreds of energy workers try to get the power back on, WLWT reported.
Resident Betty Ruark told the station she was "really teed off" that houses either side of her had power, but she still needed a generator just to make coffee.
"They're right here a week after you pay your bill to read your cotton-picking meter for next month," she said. "They're threatening to cut you off if you don't pay it, but could they care less that they don't got the electric on. It don't make sense, you know?"
Duke Energy told WLWT that some repairs were helping only a small number of homes but that it hoped to have service back to normal by Sunday. Read WLWT's report on how people are getting upset
Police in Carlisle are enforcing a night-time curfew to prevent looting and other crime while the power is out, officials told WLWT.
The action was taken because of problems elsewhere in the area hit by the storm, the station said.
Residents told WLWT they didn't like the strict rules but were for the measure if it kept crime down. Read WLWT report on the action on Carlisle
Albuquerque, New Mexico
A family who fled Galveston has given up on ever going home, instead deciding to make Albuquerque their new base, KOAT reported.
Linda Sanchez and her two children thought they'd be able to ride out the storm and immediate aftermath in Houston but when Ike took out the power and the water they decided to head to more family in New Mexico.
"It's better when you know someone around you," Sanchez told KOAT. Read how KOAT is trying to help the Sanchez family