Many people call this stitch a buttonhole stitch. Before the advent of sewing machines that have zigzag stitch capabilities, a button hole stitch was hand sewn to secure the edges of a buttonhole. In that case the blanket stitches were sewn right next to each other and encased the edges of the buttonhole opening.
Many people detest hand sewing... It can be enjoyable! Hand sewing is a great way to pass time while waiting in a doctors waiting room, waiting in the car for the kids to be done with their various activities or while watching TV.
A needle, thread and a small pair of scissors to cut the thread are all you need to start hand sewing.
Simple thread and needle are not your only possibility though! Experiment with yarn or decorative thread depending on what you are sewing for interesting effects.
Starting the Blanket Stitch